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Twitter’s Banning of Journalists Could Help to Establish a New Approach to Content Moderation in the App



What to Make of Elon Musk's Buy-Up of Twitter Shares

In amongst all the angst and argument sparked by Elon Musk’s most recent actions in suspending journalists from the app, in between all the rage-bait and trolling from both sides of the political spectrum, there actually may be some new seeds of uneasy agreement forming, from which we could potentially see a new moderation approach grow and flourish within Elon’s ‘Twitter 2.0’ experiment.

I suspect that won’t be the eventual outcome, but the latest sequence of events has shown that there is a threshold at which almost everyone agrees that there needs to be some level of moderation at the app.

We even now have a direct aim for such, a barrier with which to base those future decisions.

To recap, earlier this week, Twitter abruptly banned an automated account which provided location info on the whereabouts of Elon’s private jet. According to Musk, somebody had used this info to seek him out in LA, eventually confronting a private car, which he wasn’t actually in, and harassing those inside, including Musk’s youngest child.

The rise in threat level prompted an immediate, angry response from Musk, who not only banned the @ElonJet account, but also implemented a new Twitter policy which outlaws all forms of live location tracking of individuals via tweet.

Which, as I wrote, will likely have implications beyond the edge case he’s trying to negate, and could even provide a new means for Government censorship of citizen dissent.

But nonetheless, Musk implemented the new policy anyway, which, the following day, he then also expanded to anyone, including journalists, who dared to share a link to the @ElonJet account on other platforms – which, in Musk’s view, was done in an effort to skirt the new rules.

Which it wasn’t, but Musk banned a handful of prominent tech reporters anyway, which sparked a whole new wave of criticism around freedom of the press, and Musk seeking to quell dissenting opinion, using, effectively, authoritarian powers in his new app.

In Musk’s view, the actions he took were merely an extension of his new rules, designed to protect his family. But to others, they’re a significant overstep in power, which has also raised the eyebrows of EU officials who have strict rules around freedom of the media built into social platform operating parameters.

Still, Musk has remained steadfast in his actions, even jumping into a Twitter Spaces chat with several journalists to defend his decision.

You’ll note that the @ElonJet account is a speaker in this Space, which shouldn’t be possible, because the account is actually suspended. Several other suspended accounts were also able to join the Space, and interact as normal, which is a bug that Musk eventually used as an excuse to shut down the conversation, and the entire Spaces functionality altogether, so the Twitter team could work on a fix (the Space carried on for around half an hour after Musk’s brief appearance).

Musk then went back to his own safe space, exchanging tweets with the same five or so people as always who offered support and endorsement of his actions.

This is the core assertion of Musk’s action to prevent location tracking, which is not entirely correct. Musk did apply for a PIA exemption, which would limit public tracking of his private jet, back in October, but it’s unclear if/when that exemption went into effect. And there are ways around this – basically, it is possible to track the location of Elon’s private jet via publicly available data, while any tracking of such doesn’t extend to what happens outside of airports. So the assertion that this was some kind of intricate personal tracking operation (Musk said that these accounts were publishing ‘assassination coordinates’) is a misnomer at best.

But that’s the line that Elon and Co. are taking. Musk’s friend Jason Calacanis also jumped on the Twitter Spaces chat before Musk, and repeatedly asked speakers ‘how would you feel if someone from Elon’s family got hurt’ as a result of the tracking data being published.

Which is a deliberate obfuscation of the core concern, or a blatant misunderstanding. But that’s the thing – on one side of the debate, you now have Elon’s biggest supporters, who are predominantly conservative commentators, saying things like:

Yet, on the other, they’re saying that Elon is fine with levelling unfounded claims of paedophilia against innocent people (which has now happened more than once), and unleashing his mob of supporters onto people who he personally doesn’t like. Musk seems to believe that this type of accusation, which can also cause real-world harm, should be allowed, but re-sharing public flight into should not.

Because one is a risk, and one isn’t?

Indeed, after recently being named and shamed by Musk over his work at Twitter, former platform Trust and Safety head Yoel Roth was forced to flee his home due to fears that Musk’s supporters may target him in real life.

Musk’s supporters expressed little sympathy for Roth’s plight.

But the same question that Calacanis posed to journalists could be put to Musk and his fans in this instance – what if Yoel Roth was actually attacked as a result of Musk’s ‘name and shame’ approach?

The question itself gets the core of the moderation issue at social platforms, which is not about political censorship and making calls on content along ideological lines, as has been suggested by Musk via his recent ‘Twitter Files’ expose of internal discussions around key moderation concerns.

If anything, social platforms want to leave as much borderline content up on the platform, as it generates more engagement – because as past research has shown, the closer people get to the borderline of the platform’s rules, the more interaction their posts see.

Social platforms are incentivized to leave the worst, most divisive comments up – but at some point, they need to ask whether that comment or post could actually lead to real-world harm.

In this sense, both sides of the discussion here are absolutely correct – Elon Musk should not be vilifying past employees by name, and making them a target, because that could lead to real world harm. An account dedicated to sharing Elon Musk’s private flights, whether it’s publicly available data or not, arguably shouldn’t be posting such to a platform of millions of people, because that could also lead to real-world harm as a result.

That’s the right threshold that we should be using for critical moderation decisions – which would also relate to this:

Tweet from Donald Trump

Elon Musk has been a vocal critic of Twitter’s past decisions to censor and suspend the former President. But Trump’s comments, viewed through the same prism of assessment, could indeed lead to real-world harm.

Which is why this comment was removed, and what led to Trump, eventually, being banned.

As Musk himself said in his brief appearance in yesterday’s Spaces chat:

“There’s not going to be any distinction in the future between journalists and regular people, everyone’s going to be treated the same. You’re not special because you’re a journalist, You’re a twitter user, You’re a citizen.”

That same approach should apply to politicians – if this is the barrier at which we rule what should and should not be allowed in the app, then all users should be held to the same standards, and the red line should be ‘potential for harm’.

Could this tweet lead to real world harm? Then it should be removed.

There’s nuance and complexity within that question, as it’s difficult to ascertain the actual potential of harm in each comment. But that’s been the challenge of online content moderation forever, and the positive here is that we’re getting to the core of it with Elon and Co. quickly, which could lead to meaningful reform in approach.

Though I suspect it won’t. Right now, the platform is being split into sides, with both accusing one another of opposing their perspectives, and Twitter, seemingly, benefitting (at least in some ways) from the increased engagement.

But in reality, this incident shows that they aren’t in opposition. The Musk jet tracking controversy shows that both are actually closer to agreement than they seemingly realize, with the ‘free speech’ crew acknowledging that there are limits to such, and the left-leaning group conceding that, yes, there could be harm from an account that tracks the location of Musk’s vehicles.

So the meeting point here is ‘harm’ and the potential of a tweet to cause such in real life.

Now we know the limit, that seemingly everyone accepts. Hopefully, Musk and Co. can use this to formulate more effective moderation parameters moving forward.

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12 Proven Methods to Make Money Blogging in 2024



Make money blogging


Make money bloggingThis is a contributed article.

The world of blogging continues to thrive in 2024, offering a compelling avenue for creative minds to share their knowledge, build an audience, and even turn their passion into profit. Whether you’re a seasoned blogger or just starting, there are numerous effective strategies to monetize your blog and achieve financial success. Here, we delve into 12 proven methods to make money blogging in 2024:

1. Embrace Niche Expertise:

Standing out in the vast blogosphere requires focus. Carving a niche allows you to cater to a specific audience with targeted content. This not only builds a loyal following but also positions you as an authority in your chosen field. Whether it’s gardening techniques, travel hacking tips, or the intricacies of cryptocurrency, delve deep into a subject you’re passionate and knowledgeable about. Targeted audiences are more receptive to monetization efforts, making them ideal for success.

2. Content is King (and Queen):

High-quality content remains the cornerstone of any successful blog. In 2024, readers crave informative, engaging, and well-written content that solves their problems, answers their questions, or entertains them. Invest time in crafting valuable blog posts, articles, or videos that resonate with your target audience.

  • Focus on evergreen content: Create content that remains relevant for a long time, attracting consistent traffic and boosting your earning potential.
  • Incorporate multimedia: Spice up your content with captivating images, infographics, or even videos to enhance reader engagement and improve SEO.
  • Maintain consistency: Develop a regular publishing schedule to build anticipation and keep your audience coming back for more.

3. The Power of SEO:

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) ensures your blog ranks high in search engine results for relevant keywords. This increases organic traffic, the lifeblood of any monetization strategy.

  • Keyword research: Use keyword research tools to identify terms your target audience searches for. Strategically incorporate these keywords into your content naturally.
  • Technical SEO: Optimize your blog’s loading speed, mobile responsiveness, and overall technical aspects to improve search engine ranking.
  • Backlink building: Encourage other websites to link back to your content, boosting your blog’s authority in the eyes of search engines.

4. Monetization Magic: Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing allows you to earn commissions by promoting other companies’ products or services. When a reader clicks on your affiliate link and makes a purchase, you get a commission.

  • Choose relevant affiliates: Promote products or services that align with your niche and resonate with your audience.
  • Transparency is key: Disclose your affiliate relationships clearly to your readers and build trust.
  • Integrate strategically: Don’t just bombard readers with links. Weave affiliate promotions naturally into your content, highlighting the value proposition.

5. Display Advertising: A Classic Approach

Display advertising involves placing banner ads, text ads, or other visual elements on your blog. When a reader clicks on an ad, you earn revenue.

  • Choose reputable ad networks: Partner with established ad networks that offer competitive rates and relevant ads for your audience.
  • Strategic ad placement: Place ads thoughtfully, avoiding an overwhelming experience for readers.
  • Track your performance: Monitor ad clicks and conversions to measure the effectiveness of your ad placements and optimize for better results.

6. Offer Premium Content:

Providing exclusive, in-depth content behind a paywall can generate additional income. This could be premium blog posts, ebooks, online courses, or webinars.

  • Deliver exceptional value: Ensure your premium content offers significant value that justifies the price tag.
  • Multiple pricing options: Consider offering tiered subscription plans to cater to different audience needs and budgets.
  • Promote effectively: Highlight the benefits of your premium content and encourage readers to subscribe.

7. Coaching and Consulting:

Leverage your expertise by offering coaching or consulting services related to your niche. Readers who find your content valuable may be interested in personalized guidance.

  • Position yourself as an expert: Showcase your qualifications, experience, and client testimonials to build trust and establish your credibility.
  • Offer free consultations: Provide a limited free consultation to potential clients, allowing them to experience your expertise firsthand.
  • Develop clear packages: Outline different coaching or consulting packages with varying time commitments and pricing structures.

8. The Power of Community: Online Events and Webinars

Host online events or webinars related to your niche. These events offer valuable content while also providing an opportunity to promote other monetization avenues.

  • Interactive and engaging: Structure your online events to be interactive with polls, Q&A sessions, or live chats. Click here to learn more about image marketing with Q&A sessions and live chats.

9. Embrace the Power of Email Marketing:

Building an email list allows you to foster stronger relationships with your audience and promote your content and offerings directly.

  • Offer valuable incentives: Encourage readers to subscribe by offering exclusive content, discounts, or early access to new products.
  • Segmentation is key: Segment your email list based on reader interests to send targeted campaigns that resonate more effectively.
  • Regular communication: Maintain consistent communication with your subscribers through engaging newsletters or updates.

10. Sell Your Own Products:

Take your expertise to the next level by creating and selling your own products. This could be physical merchandise, digital downloads, or even printables related to your niche.

  • Identify audience needs: Develop products that address the specific needs and desires of your target audience.
  • High-quality offerings: Invest in creating high-quality products that offer exceptional value and user experience.
  • Utilize multiple platforms: Sell your products through your blog, online marketplaces, or even social media platforms.

11. Sponsorships and Brand Collaborations:

Partner with brands or businesses relevant to your niche for sponsored content or collaborations. This can be a lucrative way to leverage your audience and generate income.

  • Maintain editorial control: While working with sponsors, ensure you retain editorial control to maintain your blog’s authenticity and audience trust.
  • Disclosures are essential: Clearly disclose sponsored content to readers, upholding transparency and ethical practices.
  • Align with your niche: Partner with brands that complement your content and resonate with your audience.

12. Freelancing and Paid Writing Opportunities:

Your blog can serve as a springboard for freelance writing opportunities. Showcase your writing skills and expertise through your blog content, attracting potential clients.

  • Target relevant publications: Identify online publications, websites, or magazines related to your niche and pitch your writing services.
  • High-quality samples: Include high-quality blog posts from your site as writing samples when pitching to potential clients.
  • Develop strong writing skills: Continuously hone your writing skills and stay updated on current trends in your niche to deliver exceptional work.


Building a successful blog that generates income requires dedication, strategic planning, and high-quality content. In today’s digital age, there are numerous opportunities to make money online through blogging. By utilizing a combination of methods such as affiliate marketing, sponsored content, and selling digital products or services, you can leverage your blog’s potential and achieve financial success.

Remember, consistency in posting, engaging with your audience, and staying adaptable to trends are key to thriving in the ever-evolving blogosphere. Embrace new strategies, refine your approaches, and always keep your readers at the forefront of your content creation journey. With dedication and the right approach, your blog has the potential to become a valuable source of income and a platform for sharing your knowledge and passion with the world, making money online while doing what you love.

Image Credit: DepositPhotos

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Snapchat Explores New Messaging Retention Feature: A Game-Changer or Risky Move?




Snapchat Explores New Messaging Retention Feature: A Game-Changer or Risky Move?

In a recent announcement, Snapchat revealed a groundbreaking update that challenges its traditional design ethos. The platform is experimenting with an option that allows users to defy the 24-hour auto-delete rule, a feature synonymous with Snapchat’s ephemeral messaging model.

The proposed change aims to introduce a “Never delete” option in messaging retention settings, aligning Snapchat more closely with conventional messaging apps. While this move may blur Snapchat’s distinctive selling point, Snap appears convinced of its necessity.

According to Snap, the decision stems from user feedback and a commitment to innovation based on user needs. The company aims to provide greater flexibility and control over conversations, catering to the preferences of its community.

Currently undergoing trials in select markets, the new feature empowers users to adjust retention settings on a conversation-by-conversation basis. Flexibility remains paramount, with participants able to modify settings within chats and receive in-chat notifications to ensure transparency.

Snapchat underscores that the default auto-delete feature will persist, reinforcing its design philosophy centered on ephemerality. However, with the app gaining traction as a primary messaging platform, the option offers users a means to preserve longer chat histories.

The update marks a pivotal moment for Snapchat, renowned for its disappearing message premise, especially popular among younger demographics. Retaining this focus has been pivotal to Snapchat’s identity, but the shift suggests a broader strategy aimed at diversifying its user base.

This strategy may appeal particularly to older demographics, potentially extending Snapchat’s relevance as users age. By emulating features of conventional messaging platforms, Snapchat seeks to enhance its appeal and broaden its reach.

Yet, the introduction of message retention poses questions about Snapchat’s uniqueness. While addressing user demands, the risk of diluting Snapchat’s distinctiveness looms large.

As Snapchat ventures into uncharted territory, the outcome of this experiment remains uncertain. Will message retention propel Snapchat to new heights, or will it compromise the platform’s uniqueness?

Only time will tell.

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Catering to specific audience boosts your business, says accountant turned coach



Catering to specific audience boosts your business, says accountant turned coach

While it is tempting to try to appeal to a broad audience, the founder of alcohol-free coaching service Just the Tonic, Sandra Parker, believes the best thing you can do for your business is focus on your niche. Here’s how she did just that.

When running a business, reaching out to as many clients as possible can be tempting. But it also risks making your marketing “too generic,” warns Sandra Parker, the founder of Just The Tonic Coaching.

“From the very start of my business, I knew exactly who I could help and who I couldn’t,” Parker told My Biggest Lessons.

Parker struggled with alcohol dependence as a young professional. Today, her business targets high-achieving individuals who face challenges similar to those she had early in her career.

“I understand their frustrations, I understand their fears, and I understand their coping mechanisms and the stories they’re telling themselves,” Parker said. “Because of that, I’m able to market very effectively, to speak in a language that they understand, and am able to reach them.” 

“I believe that it’s really important that you know exactly who your customer or your client is, and you target them, and you resist the temptation to make your marketing too generic to try and reach everyone,” she explained.

“If you speak specifically to your target clients, you will reach them, and I believe that’s the way that you’re going to be more successful.

Watch the video for more of Sandra Parker’s biggest lessons.

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