Last year, Twitter celebrated their first time making a profit, after over a decade of existence. Hooray? Perhaps the question of how successful twitter has (or has not) been has to do with their leadership crisis, earning a reputation of indecisiveness and a tendency to make things more complicated than they need to be.
As Vanity Fair asserts, Twitter is losing the Internet war, and we can’t help but agree. From the troubles that come from a highly dysfunction of management with three CEO changes, and not one cohesive vision.
A simple Google search can tell you that Twitter’s fake news, fake accounts, and fake people problem is a hot spot on the public eye. Del Harvey, Twitter’s Head of Trust and Safety deals with the landscape of Twitter – the ominous mountain of Donald Trump and the Russians, Nazis, hackers, and harassers that has overwhelmed Twitter like a post-apocalyptic army of bots that would be right at home in a J.J Abrams movie.
Harvey is talented, but the company lacks a strong technology solution to these problems, and clearly lacks a clear set of rules (i.e an action plan) for tackling these issues (what is abuse on Twitter? What should be censored? What is Twitter’s responsibility?). The lack of clarity and the shifting definition of what constitutes a problem in regards to content on Twitter, follows a consistent trend set by Jack Dorsey in 2011 – when asked what Twitter is, he responded, “We don’t have an answer.”
Not much has changed, I guess.
What is clear is the lesson that we can take away.
A company cannot be successful without clear vision, strong leadership, and a sense of urgency. Twitter is a large company, therefore may appear successful to those unaware of their finances, but taking over a decade to finally make a profit would have put most companies out of business. Nearly a decade ago…
Their problems run rampant, and are growing exponentially with more and more fake accounts and abuses. The social media giant needs a clear understanding of what abuse is and needs to stick to it. Leadership needs to go for the wins and formulate a clear, decisive vision and a framework for how to get it done. And it needs to do so quickly – an urgency to fix the image problem that not only affects the public, but the recruiting pool. And the next pool to grow sour will be the investors, who had to wait for over 10 years to see any profit.
If the mega brand expects to keep changing the landscape like it has, it seems like they have a lot to change. It’s time for Twitter to get out of its awkward phase and clear up the very muddy pool it’s in today. Or, as they say, get off the pot.