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Progressive platforms

Today, most of the big platforms in tech advocate neoliberal values. This focus on personal responsib
Progressive platforms
By Robert Gaal • Issue #4 • View online
Today, most of the big platforms in tech advocate neoliberal values. This focus on personal responsibilities causes struggles with workers’ rightssocial equality, or content policing.
I grew up in The Netherlands, where we were often the first to implement progressive policies on drugs, same-sex marriages, abortion, and prostitution. So when I started building a platform myself, as a founder, I wondered:
What would a platform built on progressive values look like?
1. Tolerance
A progressive platform is intolerant of intolerance. It would, at all times, ask: “Is this intolerant?” If so, show them the door.
It would realize that the right to free speech isn’t the right to be an asshole.
It would also ban political ads for all the reasons Twitter has. It wouldn’t allow for manipulation in that way.
2. Data
A progressive platform realizes your data is yours. Remove it, export it, hide it, you decide.
It does everything GDPR or CCPA does, and more.
It allows you to fine-tune access to information, forever.
It wouldn’t do anything without your opt-in.
It wouldn’t hide its terms.
3. People
A progressive platform is built by people who are respected by their company.
It doesn’t hire full-time contractors because it can’t guarantee their wellbeing that way.
It pays a living wage.
It shares its governance and ownership to prevent abuse of power.
4. Long-term
A progressive platform is made by a company with a long-term duty.
It commits to these values even after an exit, IPO, or merger because those are part of its product.
It is open to an independent review of its values over time. It embraces free press to keep it honest.
5. Environmental
A progressive platform takes care of its impact on society and the environment.
It would contribute actively to not just stopping but reversing climate change.
It also means building a platform where users are encouraged to contribute to society and their environment.
6. …?
You might think these kinds of values are naive. You might disagree on what “progressive” means. That’s okay. You can build a different platform.
If you do share these values, then I’m asking you to reply. How would you build a progressive platform?

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Robert Gaal
Today, most of the big platforms in tech advocate neoliberal values. This focus on personal responsibilities causes struggles with workers' rights, social equality, or content policing.

What would a platform built on progressive values look like? https://t.co/Yuu3dpbtPC
10:02 AM - 2 Mar 2020
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