Social media services are gatekeepers. That’s why you need to control your online presence.
Elon Musk’s tenure as the head of Twitter has been full of surprises. Today, he dropped a bombshell: you can no longer promote your presence on other social networks.
Or something like that. Twitter’s official rule states (this was originally linked to the rule, but that page has now been removed, throwing even more confusion into that status of the rule announce yesterday):
At both the Tweet level and the account level, we will remove any free promotion of prohibited 3rd-party social media platforms, such as linking out (i.e. using URLs) to any of the below platforms on Twitter, or providing your handle without a URL:
- Prohibited platforms:
- Facebook, Instagram, Mastodon, Truth Social, Tribel, Post and Nostr
- 3rd-party social media link aggregators such as linktr.ee, lnk.bio
- “follow me @username on Instagram”
- “[email protected]”
- “check out my profile on Facebook – facebook.com/username”
Yep, it really lists linking to LinkInBio tools like linktr.ee.
Musk later tweeted that casual sharing of links is acceptable. So who knows what the policy is since Musk is making it up on the fly?
He’s just the latest in a line of “free speech absolutists” who really just want to decide what should be allowed and what shouldn’t.
One thing is for sure: how you will be able to use Twitter in the future is uncertain.
This is one more example of why you need to control your online presence with your own domain name and website.
Early on, companies encouraged their fans to follow them on Facebook so they could promote their business to them there. Then, Facebook tweaked its algorithm so business posts wouldn’t appear as often, forcing businesses to pay to reach the fanbases they built on the platform.
Now, businesses and personalities should be concerned that they might not only have trouble reaching their followers on Twitter, but they might also get cut off entirely for doing something that irks the wealthiest man in the world.
Social media platforms are a must for most businesses but don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
Paul J. says
And ICANN reminds us that they are not better than Elon, they too can take away your domain whenever they please and for whatever reason their whims deem accetpable.
Jovenet Consulting says
I find this acceptable when the content is wrong.
Paul J. says
That’s a slippery slope, who decides if the content is “wrong”, who watches over it? And who watches the watchers? Furthermore according to you, this article itself is thus null and void, because Elon does exactly what you are suggesting: removing stuff he deems “wrong”.
Your argument literally justifies authoritarianism and tyranny and you don’t even realize it.
Wrong to you, right? Disgusting.
Paul J. says
It is not “your” domain, you do not own it, you are only renting it. ICANN is not better than Elon, they too can take your domain away from you for whatever reason they like
Andrew Allemann says
Not really. Show me a time they took a domain away for any reason they wanted
Paul J. says
Come on Andrew, you can not be serious right now. It is in fact true, ever seen a site that says: “This domain ha been seized by the Federal Bureau of Investigation”, how do you think this is possible to begin with?
It’s possible because you do in fact do not own your domain, that’s how that is possible, a central authority like ICANN ultimately owns it. Other more familiar cases, how about being robbed by reverse domain hijacking, how is that possible?
It’s possible because YOU.DO.NOT.OWN.YOUR.DOMAIN. It’s a mirage, a lie, a fraud, a deception. You have the illusion of ownership at best, this is not a matter of opinion, it’s a cold hard fact.
Michael Anthony Castello says
You think you are safe living in your home? Eminent domain refers to the power of the government to take private property and convert it into public use.
Alex Hofmann says
You are making his case. The given argument of yours does not detract from his/her thesis, quite the opposite. That’s exactly the reason why technologies and digital assets that enable a “sovereign individual” are so popular to begin with.
Paul J. says
No, I don’t, in fact I totally agree with you. That’s why I wanted to give the analogy of acquiring property in China and making clear that one’s “ownership” is a flimsy promise which depends on being on good terms with the ruling regime, this is also valid for many nations in the world, probably for the overwhelming majority of nations if not all. ( see [email protected]’s asset seizure of [email protected] origin individuals )
That’s why my portfolio is well diversified and covers a multitude of cases, including tail event black swans.
Digital assets that have strong properties and guarantees are a fraction of my investments that I appreciate the most.
Andrew Allemann says
I both understand your point and don’t think it takes away from the gist of my post. First I don’t think it’s accurate to say ICANN is taking away the domains. The government entities are working with the registry and registrars. And any entity is going to comply with a government order. ICANN, and even the major registries, have a history of pushing back on seizures.
And your home can be confiscated for failure to pay goverment-set property taxes; thus, we never actually “own” real estate.
Joe Alagna says
@paul – I think you’re correct about not “owning” a domain. My understanding is that we only own certain rights to them granted by the registry and registrar for a certain term. And registrars are subject to agreements with ICANN.
But it’s not ICANN who takes a domain, it is governments, mostly acting against actions considered illegal (Your example actually demonstrates that).
The only scenarios I’ve seen where ICANN takes action against registrants is related to trademark abuse and, like it or not, at least in those situations there is due process.
At least up till now, there are fewer examples of control over the expression of thought on domain names than on social media.
Regardless, I think Andrews point makes sense. What online method offers more freedom of expression than a domain name?
Paul J. says
I’m not sure if this reply will reach you since my other replies are not being published.
Anyway, it’s not true that websites are only being seized only if “illegal” things happen. Since you correctly identified that it happens because of government pressure you should also have the mental clarity to realize that whenever there is such a potential for abuse of power, that power is always abused, not “maybe” but “when”, exactly when the right incentives align. There have been many cases where domains have been seized for bogus reasons motivated by lobbying/politics.
>Regardless, I think Andrews point makes sense. What online method offers more freedom of expression than a domain name?
I dont disagree with Andrew on that point, only with his misleading claim that one “owns” the domain.
There are two sides to the are domains property or contract-to-lease assets.
Both are right until SCOTUS makes a ruling on the issue, as they did in the Booking*com case.
In some Courts, domains are property, in other Courts domains are contracts to lease.
Its always been the case governments could seize or freeze assets in criminal proceedings.
Only the U.S. Supreme Court can determine absolutely if domains are property or contracts-for-lease. Until then, it all depends on which judge you ask.
Joe Crescenzi says
Since he mentions that people can use casual links, I think he’s mainly trying to block accounts that are used by bots that promote content that mainly exists outside Twitter. There are tons of these because the API is so open to non-human posting.
NetOperator Wibby says
This is funny because he caused a huge stink about bots before he was forced to buy Twitter LOL. Now that he’s there he has no idea how to deal with bots.
Your own email list on your own domain.
Mark Thorpe says
He’s painted himself into a corner (far right).
His true colors are showing now.
Twitter has sucked for years.
He bought the cow to own the milk but the milk has dried up.
True free speech lives on your own domain name website. Not a damn thing he can do about it.
Domo Sapiens says
1) Elon is just becoming aware of how un-popular he became due to his actions and mouth…
2) You can’t serve 2 masters (left and right)…
Twitter is done… Bankrputcy next?
This will make domains more valuable.
Thank you Elon.
Garry Anderson says
Yes – with a domain you can comment on people and (unless you promote something illegal) they are the only ones that can stop you – IF you have defamed them. It is not libellous if true. Strangely nobody has tried to stop me on skilful.com yet.
Glad to see Elon doing his part to increase the value of dotCom domains.
I’ll sit back for 2023 and watch the collapse of the nGTLDs as well.
It’s tide going out season.
Stinky Fish Monger says
Squarely will never sell. Dumb domain
@Stinky Fish Monger
Thanks for your chicken s*&hit anonymous faceless input
Okie then I will remove Squarely dot com domain ASAP to save renewal fees.
I was just making a general statement.
As others have said, ICANN does not claw domains back. Almost all those events were the decision of a registrar or registry, a court or a government. The only place where this could be asserted is UDRP/URS, where ICANN established a policy (although being approved by the community, ICANN did endorse it rather than rejecting) that might cause domain ownership to be transferred.
geometry dash says
Not to be outdone by Elon, ICANN reminds us that they, too, have the power to revoke your domain at any time and for any reason they see fit.