Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey reportedly declined to host a fundraiser for Tulsi Gabbard when the presidential candidate approached him last year. According to media reports, the 43-year-old entrepreneur donated $2,800 to Gabbard’s campaign in June 2019 but refused to back her publicly. Dorsey also made a contribution to former tech executive Andrew Yang’s campaign in March 2019 and gave clarification after receiving criticism over it.
This early it’s all about being allowed to debate. I’ve made personal contributions because I appreciate Andrew’s focus on the coming displacement of work due to AI and automation, and Tulsi’s strong anti-war stance. I believe their voices are important to surface in the debates. https://t.co/Z24o2E4cmV— jack 🌍🌏🌎 (@jack) July 19, 2019
Gabbard has been a vocal critic of Big Tech companies, including Twitter, and has often called for their break up. In June last year, the Democrat leader lashed out at Google of suspending her Google Ads account without providing any explanation. Gabbard said that could not come up with a concrete reason and kept obfuscating with a series of ‘inconsistent and incoherent’ reasons for the suspension.
Absolute power corrupts absolutely. I agree with Senator Warren on the need to break up big tech companies like Facebook, Google, Amazon. Will be introducing similar legislation in U.S. House. https://t.co/OrdOqH0ZFB— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) March 12, 2019
Recently, Twitter stopped accepting political advertisements, starting from November 22, after Dorsey made the announcement on October 31. In a series of tweets, Dorsey said that internet advertising is incredibly powerful and very effective for commercial advertisers, but similar power brings significant risks to politics, where it can be used to influence votes to affect the lives of millions.
“Internet political ads present entirely new challenges to civic discourse: machine learning-based optimization of messaging and micro-targeting, unchecked misleading information, and deep fakes. All at increasing velocity, sophistication, and overwhelming scale,” tweeted Dorsey while making the announcement. Twitter is also planning to fund a small independent team of up to five open source architects, engineers, and designers to develop an open and decentralized standard for social media.