Data the dog: Twitter is turning its privacy policy into an old-school video game | Twitter

Data the dog: Twitter is turning its privacy policy into an old-school video game |  Twitter

On Friday, Elon Musk announced that he was pausing his $45 billion purchase of Twitter because he had only just discovered that some of the accounts on the site were fake.

But that’s not the strangest thing that’s happened to the ailing social media platform this week. Because on Tuesday, the current top executives, who may be trying to demonstrate their vision for the site, released a Super Nintendo-style browser game that summarizes Twitter’s privacy policies.

The platform unveiled Twitter Data Dash, which plays out like classic side-scrolling Platformer draped with a healthy dose of disinformation angst.

You take control of a blue puppy named Data and are tasked with recovering five bones hidden in each of Day-Glo’s urban environments in the game. (Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was the analog I kept coming back to throughout my gameplay.) After you reach your goal, the level ends and Twitter blesses you with a distilled talking point from their Ethics Council. Case in point: After I collected my first bones, a message appeared on the screen informing me that I could opt out of Twitter’s targeted advertising if I wanted to. The second time, I received instructions on how to filter my DMs.

The game image shows an underwater scene with a sunken ship and a message that says
Photo: Twitter

I get the instincts here. Everyone on the internet has been conditioned to blindly scroll through every Terms of Service Agreement we come across, so the idea of ​​condensing some of the niceties into a chibi, interactive browser distraction makes perfect sense. After all, the company just rewrote its privacy policy and could certainly use some positive PR. But some of the messages in the game are contradictory. In the opening sequence, we’re told that Data wants to avoid any intrusive “cat courtship” in her path. Sure enough, you’ll come across a couple of cats wielding feline-themed propaganda that Data has to dodge to avoid taking damage. But how does that translate to the actual platform? Is Twitter telling me to scroll past every ad I see on my timeline? Does it recognize that in order to participate in social media, one must constantly evade the algorithm?

“If Twitter really wanted to be accurate with this level, you wouldn’t be running freely around a city dodging baddies and collecting bones of somewhat questionable origin,” notes tech site Gizmodo. “Instead, the bad guys are inevitable, and not only are they actively piling up on your poor Data pup and crushing his tiny lungs, but you, the player, must live with the knowledge that Data will be choked out long after you’ve finished the game.” have left.”

The more important problem with Twitter Data Dash is that the game is not very fun. The controls are too floating: right now the jump button is mapped to the up arrow, and that’s just insane. If we must gamify our privacy politics – if that is the nightmare we must live through – then I demand Elden Ring-like precision. At this point, it’s the least Twitter can do.

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