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Radio Atlantic: How to Fix Social Media – The Atlantic

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Social media platforms once promised to connect the world. Today’s digital communities, though, often feel like forces for disunity. Anger and discord in 2018 seemed only amplified by the social media institutions that now dictate our conversations. Executive editor Matt Thompson sits down with staff writer Alexis Madrigal to find out how we got to this point and whether we can do anything to solve it.

Discussion topics include: why our online problems are really offline ones, what these platforms have lost in pursuit of scale, and how Matt and Alexis’s experiments with solutions have fared.

Last year, Alexis removed retweets from his Twitter (and was pessimistic about new changes bringing back the Old Twitter). Matt just began an experiment with turning his Twitter into a place for conversation rather than performance by reclaiming “The Ratio.” The effort reminds Alexis of another noble attempt at making your own rules online. Has it Made the Internet Great Again? Listen to find out.

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Kevin Townsend is an associate producer at The Atlantic.

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