Vitalik Buterin praises X’s Community Notes as epitomizing ‘crypto values’
In a recent analysis on his personal website, Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin expressed his admiration for X’s Community Notes tool, which he believes embodies the principles of the crypto community on social media. Buterin described the feature as the closest thing to ‘crypto values’ that has been seen in the mainstream world. Community Notes, previously known as Birdwatch, was launched by Twitter in October 2022 as a way for users to rate tweets as helpful and provide additional context.
Buterin acknowledged that the algorithm behind Community Notes is not perfect, but he commended its ability to maintain credible neutrality and usefulness in contentious situations. He noted that the tool goes beyond simply averaging scores from user votes to determine helpfulness, and it also detects major political divisions within content. Additionally, Community Notes has been instrumental in providing context for misleading photos and debunking COVID-19 misinformation.
Buterin emphasized the importance of distinguishing between trustless protocols and centralized constructs, highlighting the ‘theorycel aesthetic’ side of crypto as a means to achieve this distinction. He asserted that while large-scale applications still have a way to go in terms of fully embodying crypto values, Community Notes is a significant step forward and has already demonstrated its value.
Musk’s Influence and Buterin’s Criticism
Buterin went further to suggest that Elon Musk, as the owner of Twitter, may have exerted influence over the removal of certain Community Notes that conflicted with his business interests, such as criticisms of China’s government. Despite Buterin’s criticism of the actions taken at Twitter following Musk’s takeover, Musk himself praised Buterin’s analysis as a “great analysis.”
Prior to his acquisition of Twitter, Musk identified as a “free speech absolutist.” However, reports have emerged suggesting that he implemented a five-second delay for links to news organizations like The New York Times and Facebook. These reports coincide with an ongoing online dispute between Musk and Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, with both billionaires expressing their intent to engage in a mixed martial arts fight in the future.
Decentralized Social Media: The Future of Crypto
The discussion around Community Notes coincides with the growing interest in decentralized social media platforms. As crypto continues to evolve, many believe that decentralized social media represents the next breakthrough in the industry. By removing centralized control and incentivizing user participation, these platforms aim to create a more transparent and censorship-resistant social media experience.
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