(San Francisco) Elon Musk announced Friday that he will make public the algorithm his Twitter platform uses to recommend tweets to each user, a transparent process he has long advocated not implementing.
“Twitter will make public on March 31 all the computer code used to recommend tweets,” said the social network’s unpredictable owner and owner.
“People are going to find a lot of crazy things, but we fix the problems as soon as we find them,” he added.
Opening up the service’s black box was one of the motivations he cited for buying Twitter last year, as well as protecting the company’s “potential” and a more holistic vision of freedom of expression.
But his first four months at the network were marked by a wave of massive and sudden layoffs, several advertiser flights, a chaotic launch of paid subscriptions, and technical failures.
The multi-billionaire explained that Twitter’s recommendation algorithms are complex and poorly understood, even among the Californian group.
“Being transparent about the code can be awkward at first, but can lead to quick improvements in the quality of recommendations,” he said.
“We are developing a simplified approach to highlight more interesting tweets,” he continued.
The transparency move will appease officials and lawmakers who want to know how the platform works.
Many elected officials, including Republicans, believe they are biased, but human rights NGOs have criticized the service, particularly under Elon Musk, for not adequately addressing misinformation and harassment.
Making the code public also means that it can be used by other developers or potential adversaries.
So far, no major alternative to Twitter has emerged. Many elected politicians, organizations and individuals still use it to communicate.
Jack Dorsey, a former network executive, is a proponent of public code programs (open up source)