HomeArticleTwitter’s ‘Hide Replies’ Function Serves To Appease The Elitists Of The Political/Media Class

Twitter’s ‘Hide Replies’ Function Serves To Appease The Elitists Of The Political/Media Class

“I honestly think the annoyingness of a certain candidate’s supporters on Twitter prevents other reporters/analysts from pointing out that said candidate’s campaign obviously isn’t going that well,” griped the popular statistician/establishment narrative manager Nate Silver on Twitter today, following angry backlash from American progressives for a controversial racially charged tweet a few hours earlier in which he referred to Bernie Sanders’ diverse base as “residue”.

We’ve been seeing many such complaints from elitists of the political/media class about the way Twitter’s somewhat egalitarian structure allows ordinary citizens to effectively criticize their posts, and it’s been growing louder and louder in recent years. Slate‘s Ashley Feinberg published an article earlier this month documenting New York Times columns over the last two years that have been dedicated to NYT columnists using their massive platforms to whinge about the comments they receive on Twitter. Feinberg’s article was inspired by the hilarious melodramatic hissy fit thrown by neocon Bret Stephens over some random guy calling him a “bedbug” on the social media site, but it’s amazing how many other columns the editors of the New York Times thought worthy of publication on this matter.

This ongoing meltdown by elitist narrative managers over the fact that mere commoners now dare address them in public without reverence and respect is the result of the novel nature of this dynamic. It used to be that the unwashed masses were kept quarantined from the narrative makers of the plutocratic media; they’d stay safely insulated among their own kind and they’d tell the rabble what to think from behind a wall of inaccessibility. Now if you’re in politics or media you’re expected to maintain a social media profile so that potential future employers can see what a good establishment lackey you are, but this new dynamic is clashing with the surging western populist movements who have an ever diminishing respect for that same establishment.

This freakout arguably began being shoved into mainstream consciousness with the completely bogus “Bernie bro” narrative  in 2015, when pundits and political influencers began seeing their comments sections light up with angry replies every time they moved to sabotage the 2016 Sanders campaign. Their discomfort at this new dynamic was falsely spun as the result of being targeted by sexism and racism because they could never get away with calling it what it really was: the experience of cognitive dissonance caused by the common riff raff criticizing them in a way to which they were not accustomed.

The mass media narrative managers are able to use their plutocrat-sponsored influence to create the illusion of an epidemic where one does not exist, as we’ve seen them do in the UK with the entirely fabricated “Labour antisemitism crisis”. It should come as no surprise, then, that Twitter has now taken steps to appease this elitist class by rolling out a new “hide replies” function in the US and Japan.

The function is typical of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s “I just want everyone to get along and keep giving me billions of dollars” mentality, allowing people to choose which replies to their posts are visible but including an option to “view hidden replies” for those who know where to look. You can tell the function is designed to appease the elitists of the political/media class by those who are happy about it, like the president of the Center for American Progress think tank Neera Tanden, who spends much of her time on Twitter smearing everyone to the left of Elizabeth Warren and tweeted “This is great” in response to the news about the “hide replies” function. Meanwhile those of a more anti-establishment political inclination have been voicing nothing but objections to the change.

Establishment loyalism (often mislabeled “centrism” despite its violent, extremist nature) is always necessarily elitist, since the sole function of that ideology is the preservation of elite power structures. We can learn a bit more about why their ilk loves this new “hide replies” function so much from a recent thread by a mainstream media denizen named Heidi N Moore, who has over 100,000 followers, and describes herself as follows: “Frequent guest on TV and radio, including MSNBC, CNBC and NPR, and my specialty is explaining difficult topics concisely and accurately. Bylines in The New York Times, The New York Times Book Review, the Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, USA Today, the Financial Times, the Washington Post, Slate, Mashable and Fortune.com.”

Moore, who often complains bitterly about Sanders supporters and despises Jeremy Corbyn, says the new function is great because before she had to rely on using Twitter’s quality filter or only reading the replies of verified (blue-checkmarked) accounts, which was insufficient for silencing objections and problematic because, while having a large account comes with the advantage of “algorithmic authority“, “people desperate for attention love to free-ride on large accounts for clout.”

“Those trolls are depending on a siphoning effect: If a tweeter is important enough for the algorithm, then their reply might be too,” Moore’s elitism-swollen head proclaims. “They might pick up a few followers by replying snottily. It’s a grift.”

“Anyone who’s ever tweeted knows that your snottiest or spiciest sentiments will get shared more widely than positive ones,” Moore argues. “So there’s a technological incentive to create and boost sentiments around disrespect, dunking, misogyny, hatefulness etc etc etc.”

Note the deliberate conflation of “disrespect” and “dunking” with “misogyny” and “hatefulness”. Citing no evidence, Moore strongly implies that “Twitter swarms” (large numbers of disagreeable comments) are primarily directed at women with large or verified accounts, thus making the new function an ideal weapon against sexist silencing tactics.

“In addition, Hide Replies isn’t censorship — it puts the jerks into a little leper island, which anyone is free to visit,” Moore says. “But — here’s the genius — we all know that endless scrolling is the way we engage. How many people will stop and read all the replies AND hidden replies?”

Indeed, how many people will do so? Probably not many. Which is precisely why these once-completely unaccountable political/media class elites are so thrilled about this new function they’ve been whining and whining and whining for since 2015. They understand that whoever controls the narrative controls the world, so they don’t like having their narratives disrupted by the plebs.

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Latest comments

  • If I understand this correctly it requires the poster to do the actual filtering better described as censoring. It is quite disgusting that Twitter is going out of its way to make their platform as bland as possible. One can easily see Twitter pushing this further with updated filter features that really turn the whole platform into a propagandist’s wet dream.

  • In case anyone out there still is not aware of Facebook’s function as a mass surveillance program, try logging in using TOR and commenting on a U.S. Republican politician’s page. Blocked, challenged to enter a phone number to receive a special code via text in order to proceed. They don’t like it if you try to evade their surveillance.

  • Twitter is stupid because it doesn’t allow enough words to discuss any topic in depth. So I’ve never felt any need to bother with it.

    I don’t need to read someone’s “one liner” off the cuff comment.

    I don’t care what some “celebrity” or “politician” “tweets”

    If “tweeting” is what passes as intelligent communication, then those who read it, must have the intelligence of a bird. (That’s an insult to birds who have far more nuance and intelligence in their song)

    I don’t use Twitter, or Facebook they are where the dregs of society go to waste away their lives. It’s online heroin. For online junkies. Just try getting off it…….and see what sort of withdrawal effects you have, then you decide for yourself if it’s an addiction.

    The greatest people to have ever lived didn’t use Facebook or Twitter.

    If you aspire to be great don’t use them. Don’t have your face burried in them all day.
    Enjoy your life. You only get this one chance, why waste it with your face in a screen?

    Figure things out by using your own direct experience of life. Not by believing anyone elses words.

  • Now I’ll know to go straight to Leper Island.
    Thanks for the tip!

  • http://www.johndayblog.com/2019/09/over-cliff.html
    We’re not supposed to know this. We’re nowhere near smart enough to even comprehend it.
    ​ ​Google’s new quantum computer reportedly spends mere minutes on the tasks the world’s top supercomputers would need several millennia to perform. The media found out about this after NASA “accidentally” shared the firm’s research.
    ​ ​The software engineers at Google have built the world’s most powerful computer, the Financial Times and Fortune magazine reported on Friday, citing the company’s now-removed research paper. The paper is said to have been posted on a website hosted by NASA, which partners with Google, but later quietly taken down, without explanation.
    ​ ​Google and NASA have refused to comment on the matter. A source within the IT giant, however, told Fortune that NASA had “accidentally” published the paper before its team could verify its findings.
    ​ ​In the research, Google reportedly claimed that it takes their new quantum processor just around 200 seconds to make calculations that existing supercomputers would require around 10,000 years to perform. They also said the processor requires mere 30 seconds to complete a task the Google Cloud server would need 50 trillion hours to do.
    https://www.rt.com/usa/469325-google-quantum-computer-reports/

    ​Oh, somebody is making this all scary for us.
    Am I supposed to be more scared of Google than of China, Russia, Israel, and Donald Trump?
    Well, Google does have deals with the first 3 and the CIA and NSA already, I guess…
    ​Google’s “Quantum Supremacy” to Render All Cryptocurrency & Military Secrets Breakable
    Supercomputer breakthrough will allow Big Tech giant to control the world.
    https://summit.news/2019/09/21/googles-quantum-supremacy-to-render-all-cryptocurrency-military-secrets-breakable/

    • Holy shit.
      #DuckDuckGo

  • Unlike Caitlin, I regard mega-social media platforms like Twitter as comparable to Amerika’s duopoly parties, i.e. virtual flypaper designed to capture maximum numbers of users for the flypaper’s own prosperity and profit, and impervious to reform.

    That said, I think that the random guy who called neocon Bret Stephens a “bedbug” owes bedbugs an apology.

  • those 100.000 ‘followers’ (walking dead) might read those twitter accounts to learn how to respond to spicy criticism. a bubble isn’t just that interesting if there’s no chance of it bursting. they’ll lose their connection with reality. long live the comment sections! f*ck twitter.

  • They have been doing this for a long time but only now is it getting obvious. For example, there were something like 16 republicans presidential candidates in the 2016 election and only four of them were ever at the front of the pack. None of those candidates were professional politicians. Donald Trump, Dr. Ben Carson, Carly Feneonia (sp?) and the CEO of Godfathers Pizza who’s name currently escapes me. NOT A COINCIDENCE. This shows to me that people are just plain getting sick and tired of the “professionals” running things. This fact should be brought out more and more but the media isn’t about to point this out.

  • I am not supposed to be surprised this late in life by the diabolical misdeeds and ” war crimes ” committed by the United States government however today I was. There is a report about ” war crimes committed in North Korea ” here; http://web.archive.org/web/20190714121903/https:/assets.documentcloud.org/documents/4334133/ISC-Full-Report-Pub-Copy.pdf
    Which is within this article here: https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/09/23/the-sickness-of-american-foreign-policy/
    My government is just sick!

  • Caitlin, what do you think of this media chart: https://swprs.org/media-navigator/

  • Jason Hirthler writes about Washington’s character assassination machine and how it has been exposed by alternative (= out of the beltway, out of wall street’s control) media. i want to give not-so-small part of the credit to you, Caitlin and Tim!

    • the article is on today’s counterpunch. the Deep State and their pressititutes not only assassinate individuals’ character but also entire economies’ and nations’ character. Lula’s Brazil is featured in the article.

  • “Heidi N. Moore”.. I get it, “hidin more”. Clever.

  • A good narrative is of course climate change.

    The golden youth is completely embarked in that cause and even Trump showed up in the United nations for the talks about climate change.

    You can be sure that, contrary to Greta, Jean-Marie Lapointe, a very dedicated man for the homeless in Canada, will never be invited to the United Nations.

    Welcome to the days of Noah just before the Second Coming of Jesus. As it was in the days of Noah, people do not want to see that climate changes are signs from God and not man-made calamities… and the flood came.

    I pray the Rosary to hasten the return of Jesus, which return could be any day now, because I have really seen enough bullshit.

    • Michel, I spoke to the god-dude today. You’re not getting in.

      • Another example we are truly in the return of the days of Noah.

        People are avoiding any serious discussion about events unfolding.

        They do not want to confront reality. This is also a reason why the System’s elites are successful with their narrative.

        Keeping my Rosary close. The Second Coming of Jesus in very near.

  • Well said Caitlin. The growth of the new clothes for emperors market continues to amaze me.

  • Sooo, this is the equivalent of fenced off “protest” zones which ensure that your speaking out against the Muslim ban or kids in cages or immigrants being shipped to MX to be preyed on is kept away from all the “nice” folks who don’t want to “see no evil” or “hear no evil”. I get it.

  • It’s interesting to me that Nate Silver has to say “I HONESTLY think” whereas I’d just say “I think” because I assume people would read ‘me’ as honest. There’s a clue in there.

    And the comment from KHATIKA… my response, I’ve learned to do without ALL social media same as other social diseases

  • Tweets are twaddle for American’s impaired attention span. Ideal for propaganda purposes.

  • I am an occasional twitter user and would like to know how to use my replies more effectively. For example to the BBC and its ‘establishment loyalists’ ditto Guardian ones. This is a Twitter for beginners question… do I reply to a Tweet, or write my own Tweet with eg @LauraKuennsberg in text or what is best? So far we don’t have the ‘hide replies function here in the UK? Brilliant post. thank you.

  • I do without twitter and without facebook and without TV. My cell phone is never on unless I need to call the police or fire department when they are needed. Yes, I am an old man that avoids talking in public. Today’s electronic gadgets are not for me. Donald Trump is a twitter twit and that is confirmation enough to me that I do not belong on there.

  • Before they started making protest illegal in America, they first started to deploy “Free Speech Zones”. These were literally cages surrounded by police and at least a couple of blocks away from the people or event being protested. Protesters could apply for a time slot, then pass through the lines of police into the cages and thus hold their little rally where nobody could see them or hear them. Except the police who were undoubtedly recording everything. This way the violent police pushed the protesters back out of sight and sound of the important people, but still claimed to be respecting the right to free speech.
    This Hide Replies feature sounds like a Twitter version.

  • honestly, i read more comments than the articles themselves, because they are a window to the real world, most commenters are honest, many are very informative and/or funny as hell.

    thus, i seldom go read those self-appointed “elite” presstitutes who got rid of the comment section.

    Caitlin got 10000% more responses when she invited her reader for feedback. what does that tell ya?

  • Twitter is an echo chamber I have learned to do without.

    • you can follow or visit others with whom you disagree. you learn a lot from your enemy.

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