A new era of transparency for Twitter

Friday, 31 March 2023

At Twitter 2.0, we believe that we have a responsibility, as the town square of the internet, to make our platform transparent. So today we are taking the first step in a new era of transparency and opening much of our source code to the global community.

On GitHub, you’ll find two new repositories (main repo, ml repo) containing the source code for many parts of Twitter, including our recommendations algorithm, which controls the Tweets you see on the For You timeline. We’re also sharing more information on our recommendation algorithm in this post on our Engineering Blog. For this release, we aimed for the highest possible degree of transparency, while excluding any code that would compromise user safety and privacy or the ability to protect our platform from bad actors, including undermining our efforts at combating child sexual exploitation and manipulation. Today’s release also does not include the code that powers our ad recommendations.

We also took additional steps to ensure that user safety and privacy would be protected, including our decision not to release training data or model weights associated with the Twitter algorithm at this point.

Ultimately, this is our first step to be more transparent in this way, and we plan to continue sharing more code that does not present a significant risk to Twitter or people on our platform.

We invite the community to submit GitHub issues and pull requests for suggestions on improving the recommendations algorithm. We are working on tools to manage these suggestions and sync changes to our internal repository. Any security concerns or issues should be routed to our official bug bounty program through HackerOne. We hope to benefit from the collective intelligence and expertise of the global community in helping us identify issues and suggest improvements, ultimately leading to a better Twitter.

As the town square of the internet, we’re ultimately doing this to foster transparency and build trust with our users, customers, and the general public. We’ll continue to share updates as we make progress in this area.

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