Beware of heroes - support the issue, not the person.

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Jun 19, 2022·edited Jun 19, 2022Liked by Laura Dodsworth

He shot a car into space for fun. (how much $$$ did that cost?). His heart is not here. Tech or Twitter or his Teslas will not save us. Organic farming/permaculture might save us.

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As ever fascinating Laura thank you, and brilliant comments/discussion too. I wonder about Musk's motives and loyalties, which for us all and anyone ultimately are tested only in life or death situations. Would I die for him? To me that's always an interesting question. When it comes to multi-billionaires I need a lot of persuading that they care about anyone but themselves. If his motives fit our wishes great. Narcissism is very interesting. Jesus might have been a well-intentioned man, but would I have died for him, given all the horrors that organised religion have unleashed on the world? Mandela is held up to be a saint, but he is far from goodness personified, prior to and after his 'Long Walk to Freedom'. Musk is certainly part of the chaotic quantum shifting that is happening (as we all are), and in many ways even the most evil acts are part of the fractals of disintegrations and rebirthings happening everywhere, in whatever space and time and energy actually are (not what we imagine, that's for sure), in the context of human evolution, never mind wider cosmological unknowns that perhaps are bigger effects than the theatre we experience through our unavoidably conditioned and narrow thinking and interpretations. We cannot say for sure that the world would be worse or better now had Hitler won WWII. Evolution is not a straight line, nor linear at all. Anyway, if Musk is good for Twitter's transition to a 'just' and compassionate platform, than on the face of it that's an improvement. Where it all leads to is anyone's guess, and perhaps in our collective imaginations, unfolding inevitably beautifully and compassionately. People are born and people die. Everything else remains almost entirely impossible to explain, and death for that matter is a total unknown and might easily be infinitely better than all this life stuff :)

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All that glitters is not gold.

"It's free speech within the context of the law. So it's not - I'm definitely not suggesting that we flout the law cause we'll get shut down if that's the case. And I think there's also there's freedom of speech or freedom of reach."

"So I think that people should be allowed to say pretty outrageous things that are within the bounds of the law, but then...(it) doesn't get amplified, it doesn't get a ton of reach."

Deconstructing the linguistics of that, what are the bounds of the law? The law is already prohibiting and penalizing "improper pronoun" use, describing gender dysphoria as mental illness, conversion therapy talk banned, mask and vaccine disinformation deemed dangerous and seditious, challenges to critical race theory deemed domestic terrorism. So, the bounds of the law are constantly shifting away from free speech.

Further deconstructing the linguistics of his words, "reach" in his context means shadow-banned. Speak freely all you want. But under his leadership at Twitter you'll be speaking freely into an empty room. Controlling reach instead of speech is a more stealthy way of censoring speech. Controlling reach is erecting a facade of free speech.

That said, Musk is standing for "more" free speech than his critics want. Which is a breath of fresh air. But his words do not indicate he stand for free speech. His stated glittery position has more in common with FeS2, pyrite (fool's gold) than Au, gold.

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Jun 19, 2022Liked by Laura Dodsworth

I have consumed many video interviews with Musk . I like the man and his values immensely. He is the only Pro Human Mega Billionaire on this planet. I really hope the deal goes through.

I also liked what he was saying about his plans for Twitter. I would have no problem spending money on Twitter and using the platform far more than I do if he owned it and made the changes he spoke of. I currently rarely use it because the place reeks of authoritarianism.

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Laura, what I'm sensing with some alarm here is a similar mindset to those who are told they are in danger from a disease and only an outside authority can save them. So they place their trust in people who are in fact up to no good at all. Musk can obviously say things that please "the right" at the moment. And "the right", feeling insecure because of the many issues where "the left" is going off the planet batshit crazy at the moment, are all too willing to listen to him, and put faith in him.

But there are no saviours outside of ourselves, and certainly not in men with this insane level of wealth and therefore power - elected by no-one.

What you are doing in your work pointing out the hypocrisies and corruption of the systems we live in is way more important than anything Musk can do. Stand in your own power and be wary of false prophets - please!

Musk has ideas like nuking Mars to terraform it for human habitation, and he is a leader in the push for transhumanism. However honey-tongued he sounds to free speech advocates and lockdown sceptics, he is, in my opinion, absolutely not someone to put your trust in for the good of humanity. Watch him like a hawk, would be my advice.

Hope that makes sense!

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Curb your enthusiasm, Laura. Musk is no man of the people. He and Donald Trump are two are two peas from the same opportunist pod, spewing what they know is populist nonsense while ruthlessly enriching themselves at the expense of others. Musk is a fan of the Chinese regime as well as a climate change enthusiast who used Twitter to call for a carbon tax. He has suspiciously close relationship with a Biden administration which happily lobs him succulent government contracts while putting the masses to the sword, with jobs and personal freedom evaporating. Not, I would have thought, the kind of character worthy of your admiration, let alone support.

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I watched the whole 'leaked' video.

Do you actually believe it was genuinely leaked? I don't think so. These things usually have an ulterior motive.

Multi-billionaire Musk, when he isn't busting unions that may threaten the iron grip he holds over his employees - but not threatening their free speech? - is busy designing human brain chips for alleged 'charitable' purposes - but not threatening the lab rats' free speech?

- and pushing for digital ID over all of humanity - but not threatening our free speech?

Are you happy to sit back and relax, convinced that the wealthiest man in history actually has OUR interests at heart and not his own? If so, you do surprise me.

My cynicism is of the passive variety, and benign, whereas Musk's is active and highly dangerous to others.

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This must be a joke...

Fear has it's faults but so does unbridled optimism in futuristic garbage.

Mr Musk spends millions if not billions lauching crap into space that does nothing but burn money and attention that could be better spent elsewhere.

Since I've started working in tech my faith in it has disappeared, a similar thing happened when I attempted to study physics in university when I naively believed that ultimate truth would be found in the physical universe.

There is power in letting go of the good intentions of the future (from heroes or villians) and embracing the void.

Kind regards,


P.S. could you unblock me on Twitter please?

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Laura, I'm just coming back to this because of Karen Hunt's latest substack post. I'm really hoping you can see the danger in Musk.


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Jun 21, 2022·edited Jun 21, 2022

It may not be possible to make the algorithms transparent. From what I understand it's machine learning that is used to determine what to show each user on their own feed.

It's likely deep learning that is used (a sub-set of machine learning) which relies on data analysts creating models in various layers where lots of powerful computer servers calculate which content to show to each user. This technique is similiar to what the human brain does to make decisions.

The models are trained to show content which keeps the user on Twitter however there is a major problem when trying to understand the individual step-by-step processes (of which there will be many for each user) that determines what tweets you see and most importantly, which ones you don't.

A quote from https://blog.hootsuite.com/twitter-algorithm/

- written on October 26, 2021

"The truth is, the fact that it’s machine learning means not even Twitter knows exactly what its algorithms will surface. That’s why Twitter is currently involved in analyzing the results of its algorithms as part of its “responsible machine learning initiative.”"

Sometimes I think keeping it simple is best, instead of using expensive computers and hiring data wizards to artistically tweak these models (and it is more art than science I'm afraid) the best solution would be to rank order the tweets you want to see similar to shopping online.

It wouldn't solve the problem of missing out on potentially good content (or receiving tailored ads/propaganda) on Twitter but there are so many tweets and only so much screen space on a phone, there's not much one can do I don't think.

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I'm not quite sure I share your enthusiasm for Musk, Laura. Remember, this is the guy that wants to put microchips in our brains.

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His algorithms have gone and banned me for nothing! But he has 5 kids and loves 'em, so it's all okay. Nothing to see here 👍


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Here's a pragmatic way to make algorithms transparent but it does require committed legislators: every website or app which uses algorithms to engage with customers and provides a service MUST provide a Plain English explanation, say in the Terms and Conditions of the website, of what function the algorithm performs or be penalised by a substantial fine. For example, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is Australia's competition regulator and national consumer law champion and has previously taken on the likes of Google and Facebook in Federal Court for their false, misleading, or deceptive conduct.

Sunlight is the best disinfectant. Let's make this happen whilst we still have nation states governing us.

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