Trump's itchy Twitter thumbs have redefined politics
In the year since his election, Donald Trump has used Twitter as an official White House channel for everything from policies and praise to bullying and brinksmanship.
"Regardless of whether you support or oppose Trump, he is a dramatic demonstration of the platform's impact in that space," said Adam Sharp, Twitter's former head of news, government and elections. "While I do wish he would use it as a force for good, I think he's motivated very much by the mainstream media attention he gets. On the other hand, I'm not so sure the media would cover him as intensely if he was much more tame."
Trump Account Deactivation Exposes Tensions Within Twitter
Disconnect between Twitter’s employees and its highest-profile user is exposed after account deactivation
Former Twitter executive Adam Sharp said Silicon Valley tech companies haven't done a good job recruiting conservatives. “The underrepresentation there is as least as pronounced as the more talked about gender and race spheres,” said Mr. Sharp, now a technology consultant.
Trump's Twitter Takedown Reveals Another Tech Blind Spot
“If you want the companies to be able to have people who look at accounts and content and take action on them accordingly, that means the companies need a whole lot of people, who have the power to click a button and delete accounts,” says Adam Sharp, Twitter’s former head of government, news, and elections. “Just like policing in the real world, where you have to have people who have the authority to slap handcuffs on you, you also have people who abuse that power. That tradeoff was illustrated better by this than anything that was said in the hearings.”
Why it should worry you that Trump's Twitter feed went down
"If you want the companies to have people to moderate these platforms, it inherently means empowering people to take action against content and users," said Adam Sharp, who served as head of news, government and elections for Twitter until late 2016. "Similar to the 'real world,' if you employ officers to police the community, and empower them with weapons and handcuffs, there is also the potential of bad apples abusing that power."
Twitter's former elections head: Political ads need transparency
The congressional hearings about social media and the 2016 election start this week with a public that's deeply divided on the issue of Russian interference, according to an Axios/SurveyMonkey poll. The companies say they're open to required disclosures for paid political advertising — but Adam Sharp argues even that may not be enough.
According to University of Utah study, the Trump campaign viewed Facebook and Twitter teams as quasi-advisers in 2016
“I believe that anything that brings candidates and elected officials closer to their constituents, making them more available for direct interaction and direct questioning by the voters is a good thing,” Sharp said. “And I think all the companies in creating these teams to reach out to candidates and bring them into the conversation, to bring them out of the comfort of the TV studios into a space where they can have this direct interaction with users is potentially a positive thing for the democratic process.”
Twitter Bars Ads From Russian Outlets Ahead Of Congressional Hearings
Twitter said it would donate its estimated $1.9 million in advertising revenue since 2011 from RT to fund external research on how Twitter is used in elections, including abuse of the platform as a tool to automatically disseminate misinformation. The planned donation marks a shift in the company’s willingness to investigate Russia’s influence. “Like most companies, these platforms have little reason to support or encourage research that paints them in a negative light,” says Adam Sharp, Twitter’s former head of government, news and elections.
How Facebook, Google and Twitter 'embeds' helped Trump in 2016
A study reveals employees the companies placed in the Trump campaign played a surprisingly active role in shaping its message and targeting voters.
"It can be confusing from the outside looking in when it appears one campaign or another is getting more support," Adam Sharp, a former Twitter executive who led the company's elections team from 2010 to 2016, said in an interview. But while the companies strive to be balanced, they cannot inform voters "when a candidate doesn't heed the help," he said.
Twitter promises greater transparency for political ads, but questions remain
Adam Sharp, Twitter's former head of news, government, and elections, who's now doing consulting work and speaking, told CNN that the initiative "harkens back to Twitter's original approach to political ads." "When they launched in 2011, they had a special purple indicator and when you moused over them, you got the full FEC disclaimer," Sharp said. "Twitter was the only platform to set that standard, but with no action from the FEC, the company succumbed to the industry direction -- and buyers' demands -- for less transparency."
Facing Prospect Of Regulation, Twitter Plans New Ad Disclosures
Adam Sharp, the company's former head of government, news and elections, says Twitter introduced similar badges on all political ads in 2011. But that same year, the Federal Election Commission deadlocked on a request from Facebook for an exemption to rules that would require such disclaimers. Facebook continued to publish political ads without the disclosures, and eventually Twitter and others followed suit. "That lack of resolution made lack of transparency the industry standard," Sharp says.
Congress's New Bill Can't Eliminate Russian Influence Online
“It’s a good piece of legislation to address the modern realities of campaign financing and the need for disclosure,” says Adam Sharp, former head of news, government, and elections at Twitter. “But I’m skeptical of how it will tamp down on behavior by bad actors like we saw in the 2016 election.” Warner himself described the bill as "common sense light-touch regulation."
U.S. Congress tangles with Facebook, other social media firms over Russia probe
“Twitter has likely not released all potentially relevant data to congressional investigators in part because of their policy requiring a court order and their track record of defending user privacy by fighting such requests,” Adam Sharp, former head of news and government at Twitter, said in an interview.
Facebook still doesn't know the extent of Russian ad buys in election
How extensive was Russia's use of Facebook to meddle with the presidential election? Even Facebook doesn't know.
"If the interaction was limited to the walled garden of self-serve, Facebook can make the case that it was just the machine talking to the Russians," Adam Sharp, Twitter's former director of media partnerships, who's now doing consulting work and speaking, told CNNMoney. "However, there are still questions," he added.
There’s Actual War, and Then There’s @Ukraine vs. @Russia
Moscow dominates the countries’ real conflict, but the underdog takes jabs at Russia on Twitter with snarky put downs and Simpsons GIFs
Many governments are ditching the stodgy politesse of public diplomacy in favor of juvenile tweets. U.S. President Donald Trump’s regular insults of other world leaders have inspired some to fire back. Mexico’s former president Vicente Fox often responds in profanity-packed English. “He has found a way to make Twitter and Facebook an as effective if not more effective bully pulpit than the actual Mexican presidency,” said Adam Sharp, Twitter’s former head of governments.
Former Twitter exec: People skipping their 'vegetables' with social media news
Discussions about "fake news" have dominated headlines and led companies such as Facebook Inc., Twitter Inc. and Alphabet Inc. to unveil a variety of approaches to moderating content on their platforms. S&P Global Market Intelligence talked with Adam Sharp — who served as Twitter’s head of news, government and elections until December 2016 and is currently a consultant and speaker — about how news is distributed on social media.