OK, so Elon bought Twitter (subject to regulatory approval, of course).
We can’t change what we can’t control. While I do not think it a great idea to have Elon be the sole owner of Twitter, is it any worse than Jack Dorsey or Ev Williams or anyone else for that matter? I suppose time will tell. So rather than complain I’m sending in constructive suggestions.
I have a short wish list for Elon and the Twitter team. I sent him a tweet this morning (prior to the deal announcement). However, I’ve been on Twitter since November 2016 so I have a few more items to add.
- Open the API up to third party developers. Not just an API. All of the API. Anything the official app can do (such as show notifications, analytics) any other app should be able to do.
- Allow users to pay to remove ads.
- Open verification to any human or organization.
- Timeline syncing across all official apps and website.
- Crack down on bots / spam / scams.
- Make the Mac app a truly great Mac app again. (it was, once, when it was called Tweetie)
- Open up the character limit even further than it is now (perhaps with a click to show more?)
- Twitter @ usernames are defacto identity on the web. So combine Twitter with something like Cash app to make every @ username able to transact currency (and crypto). Use Stripe (since Elon is friendly with Stripe)
- Allow people to sell things on Twitter with one-click. Say someone, like me, is a photographer. What if I could sell prints on a tweet? Or if a musician wanted to sell a track? Or a software developer an app? Again, you can use Stripe for this. Easy.
- Yes, allow free speech based on the laws of the land. But don’t allow calls for violence.
- Make following Hashtags make sense.
- Allow people to create Communities (ala Facebook Groups) and allow tweets to exist within them (rather than public). Keep the groups public rather than private to avoid a mess.
- Show the day’s viral Tweets in the Explore area.
- Make it easy to see tweets by location. Imagine being in a restaurant and being able to see all tweets sent from that location!
- Make boosting tweets one-click and affordable.
- Make embedding a tweet as easy as embedding a YouTube video.
- Bring Advanced Search into the apps.
- RSS wherever possible!
These would be nice, for now. Twitter has several years of development to catch up on. In my opinion, the product team at Twitter has been the slowest team in Silicon Valley to iterate. Perhaps it hasn’t been their problem directly, just their direction or management. With Elon taking ownership, maybe we will learn that as well.
Updated April 26th