Twitter’s Bitter Issue

Twitter’s Bitter Issue

Peter Amato, Staff Writer

The 21st century has seen the internet become means of giving anyone a voice. Today people have a greater say in important decisions than ever before. For example, just take a look at what happened to the Sonic the Hedgehog movie in 2019. Sonic’s “realistic” design was so strongly disliked among internet users the message got to the producers of the movie, and a redesign was issued. Something like that most likely never could’ve been achieved in the past. Twitter is one popular social media people use to make their voices heard; even celebrities use it frequently. Unfortunately, with great accessibility comes greater consequences, as in past years an issue has arose on the platform.

Around 2017, a general idea became popular specifically on Twitter (although not necessarily of origin there) that if a celebrity, brand, company, or etc. commits problematic actions, their careers should suffer for it. This concept was and still is known as “Cancel Culture” and it’s formed somewhat of a toxic community surrounding it on the site. On paper the intentions of cancellations isn’t too outlandish; a person or group of people repeatedly making detrimental mistakes then getting punished has been around since the dawn of time. But the problem is how users abuse the system, which ties back into the amount of power the people’s voices hold. If a group of twitter users believe something is wrong, even if it technically isn’t, they can still collectively get people to listen to them, which eventually leads to someone suffering for it. Everyone has the right to their own personal beliefs, but to take away someone’s livelihood because you disagree with them is just plain wrong.

On occasion, the topic that users are fighting against is unlawful. Yet, as ridiculous as this sounds, the evidence used against the people being cancelled is sometimes several years old, in one case a whole decade. Digging up traces of blunders people have made in the past is not even close to being worthy of a cancellation. The situation in question could have been resolved a long time ago, and a certain amount of research should be done before one jumps to such a detrimental conclusion.

Now, both these aspects alone are bad enough; that being attempting to take away the job of someone you believe did something wrong and using evidence that’s clearly outdated. But what makes Cancel Culture so morally incorrect is what type of evidence is gathered: tweets. That’s right, the most common piece of evidence used to put people on the spot is a tweet. Not even a few, often just one. As much as we might loathe what people say, to put someone on the spot for saying one unethical or offensive statement is unfair. We all have flaws, say foolish things, and make mistakes. If everyone got called out for every single bad take they make, would we all be cancelled?

Even though the blame can mostly be put on its members, we must recognize that it was Twitter’s staff who allowed so many situations like these to occur on their site. Of course, it’s still a great thing that people have the ability to express their opinions for the entire world to see, but that doesn’t mean our actions shouldn’t be regulated on the web. With cancellations becoming common, more people will feel unsafe on social medias, and suppress their faults rather than being honest. In the end, we should use modern technology as a tool to help, not one to hurt.