Twitter chief exec Dick Costolo has been speaking to The New York Times Magazine about the company’s plans to tackle abuse and harassment, drive user signups and move forward.
One of the most interesting tidbits in the interview is Costolo’s stance on what he says to people he meets who don’t use Twitter. Usually their position is that they don’t have anything to tweet. Costolo’s answer: that’s fine — you don’t have to tweet to use Twitter.
I meet people who say, “Oh, I don’t tweet.” I think there’s still a misconception that the reason they’d sign up is to tweet. When I meet them, I tell them, “No, you don’t have to.”
Twitter only added 4 million users in the fourth quarter of 2014, but Costolo isn’t worried about the social networking site’s long-term appeal.
Everyone wants to know and stay up-to-date on what’s happening in their world and be connected and know what’s going on. That’s what Twitter provides. So I think that irrespective of whether you want to tweet, everyone can get value out of Twitter right away.
Following his own comments that Twitter “sucks” at dealing with trolls and harassment on its own platform, the CEO reiterated his position that Twitter will be stepping up and taking more responsibility on this issue.
We’ve always taken it seriously. We’ve drawn a line on what constitutes harassment and abuse. I believe that we haven’t yet drawn that line to put the cost of dealing with harassment on those doing the harassing. It shouldn’t be the person who’s being harassed who has to do a lot of work.
Costolo also says that he uses Twitter “a lot” — but much like his suggestion above, isn’t always actively tweeting. He is, however, “listening and reading and searching” constantly.