(Jacob Bruns, Headline USA) Former Twitter Security Chief Yoel Roth, who made the decision to suspend former President Donald Trump from the platform in 2020, wrote his 2016 dissertation about Grindr, a gay hookup website, which included aspirations on how to expand the site’s reach to include minors.
Though it has long been clear that such topics pass for research in the modern American university, the more shocking part may be the fact that he got a doctorate by writing about a gay hookup phone application.
“Since its launch in 2009, the geosocial networking service Grindr has become an increasingly mainstream and prominent part of gay culture, both in the United States and globally,” Roth begins.
He goes on to argue that applications like Grindr “constitute an important site for examining how bodies, identities, and communities” are “translated into data, as well as how data becomes a tool for forming, understanding, and managing personal relationships.”
Roth certainly exercised such “management” techniques on the American people during his time on Twitter as he sought to “translate” his preferred version of the American people into “data”.
His aim was to find ways to broaden the reach of Grindr and other gay hookup sites, especially to include minors.
Elon Musk noted that Yoel argued “in favor of children being able to access adult Internet services in his PhD thesis”.
Looks like Yoel is arguing in favor of children being able to access adult Internet services in his PhD thesis: pic.twitter.com/1NiBohjhMQ
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 10, 2022
“The fact that people under 18 are on these services already indicates that we can’t readily dismiss these platforms out of hand as loci for queer youth culture,” Yoel wrote.
“Rather than merely trying to absolve themselves of legal responsibility or, worse, trying to drive out teenagers entirely, service providers should instead focus on crafting safety strategies that can accommodate a wide variety of use cases for platforms like Grindr–including, possibly, their role in safely connecting queer young adults.”
In 2017, Roth tweeted that there were “ACTUAL NAZIS IN THE WHITE HOUSE.” In April 2022, Roth told a colleague that his goal “is to drive change in the world,” which is why he decided not to become an academic.