Close menu

Twitter Co-Founder Evan Williams Says President Donald Trump Is A 'Symptom' Of Clickbait


CH Response time: 0.00033402442932129
Total Response time: 0.10654902458191
- David Barden | HuffPost Australia
A "media ecosystem" that is characterised by clickbait is not only making society dumber but is also the reason why Donald Trump is in the White House, according to Twitter co-founder Evan Williams.

Speaking to the BBC's Today program, Williams said U.S. President Donald Trump was a "symptom" of a media that "is supported and thrives on attention" and is "making us dumber and not smarter".

"The much bigger issue is not Donald Trump using Twitter, period, that got him elected, even if he says so; it is the quality of the information we consume that is reinforcing dangerous beliefs and isolating people and limiting people's open-mindedness and respect for truth," he said.

"I don't think Twitter is the worst case of this. It is the ad-driven media that churns stuff out on a minute-by-minute basis and their only measure is whether or not someone clicks on it.

"Therefore quoting Trump's tweets, or quoting the latest stupidest thing that any political candidate or anyone else says, is an effective way to exploit people's basest instincts. And that is dumbing the entire world down."

Earlier this year, Trump acknowledged the role Twitter played in helping him get into the Oval Office.

"Let me tell you about Twitter. I think that maybe I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for Twitter," he told Fox News' Tucker Carlson.

"Twitter is a wonderful thing for me, because I get the word out ... I might not be here talking to you right now as president if I didn't have an honest way of getting the word out."

Upon hearing Trump's claims, Williams said earlier this year that he was "sorry" for any role the site may have had in securing the presidency for the 71-year-old.

"It's a very bad thing, Twitter's role in that," he said in an interview with The New York Times.

"If it's true that he wouldn't be president if it weren't for Twitter, then yeah, I'm sorry."

Also On Wow