Over the last few years We have seen a increase in the active manipulation from Social media companies into their base.
Examples Facebook's increasing hostility towards controversial users and authoritarian bans on ideas.
Reddit' s purge of subreddits that conflicted with their ever changing guidelines.
Twitter targeting hashtags.
Even within IDW the the Community guidelines. Number 1 "Remember that people come to their own truth differently" could potentially be a decisive issue in any regulation of content bases on strong biased or firmly held opinion.
So 1. Are previous platforms salvageable or are they experiencing a slow drawdown out of existence?
Not putting IDW guidelines on blast just a clear example how guidelines and user growth may possibly have a negative impact on experience if ever regulated.
I remember when the internet was just starting out. How it was touted as "The Information Super Highway" and such. I knew things like truth would wind up road kill on it. Little did I expect, through things like Social Media, that Character, Morality, Identity, Free Speech, Ideology, Politics or a myriad of other qualities of human kind would be dead or dying on it in a massive pile up too. And traffic just keeps running over them, backing up and running over them again. And yet the battle to control people on it rages on. It has stunted our growth as humans as much as it has helped it. But it does have its uses. We can inform or decieve people even faster now. it can entertain us while tracking us. Its become a defacto spy in the cold on some of the things happening in the world. Through it companies know our patterns. What we watch, buy, subscribe to, consume. For some it has added to their addiction to impulse buy. For others a bane of existence exposing the skeltons in their closets. It is a part of our lives in so many ways. Beyond sharing pictures of our dinners or pets. And yet its outside of our human understanding at times. It has brought a level of technology hither unknown to the masses that has elevated some to the status of gods (or at least they think they are) and brought the high and mighty down to the level of the serfs. It is a wonderous duplicity. An exercise in Cause and Effect. A Dichtomy of Connection. The Internet now provides not only a window, but a tenuous platform for contributing to and working within an ever expanding and simultaneously shrinking world. It explains, entertains, enlightens, exposes, expounds and exacerbates. it is what we use it for. It has been and always will be a tool. Often FOR tools to make tools of big and small tools who do not know they are tools. It is, and I use a phrase I used to use to describe myself..."An Enigma, Wrapped in a Puzzle and hidden within a Conundrum."
The problem with social media is that it is on the internet and the problem with communicating via the internet is that it has always allowed disassociation from repercussions in how we comminicate. Keyboard bullies and tough guys or even just people trying to get a laugh can shit all over anyone they choose in any way they choose and most of the time it derails conversation and or incites bad behaviour.
I think even the creators of the major sites have found they rapidly moved beyond any conception of control.
The problem is that the nasty hateful and one sided malice has always been there; these companies have simply provided a platform.
Can the platforms be redeemed, probably not. Anytime and anywhere a social platform crops up unless it is heavily regulated it will all start again.
I think we are going to see the big companies become advertising and community bulletin boards if they survive at all. The benefits once touted for social media platforms I think were an illusion that has now evaporated in smoke.
The primary problem with most social media apps is that they have become overtly political and rather than allowing everyone to speak to everyone else, the founding companies have chosen sides, and ultimately political groups and communities within those social media applications speak only to themselves. At some point, interest will Wane and when it does, the valuation of those companies will begin to drop. Eventually they will either refocus or they will become outdated, outmoted, and unused.
Social media sites are a type of society. In a society, these kinds of things are inevitable and unavoidable. There shouldn't be total anarchy and there shouldn't be totalitarian rule. The sweet spot is right down the middle, but it takes a lot of time to figure out the balance.