I’ve been a proud supporter the World Affairs Council and enjoy seeing all of the wonderful educational events they put on in San Francisco. I was thus quite surprised to see Dick Costolo as the honoree at their annual awards dinner. If you know anything about the CEO’s flippant attitude towards progressive causes, you’ll only chuckle deeper as you read the premise for the honor: “…for helping to achieve positive social change through private enterprise, and for his leadership of Twitter, which is making a transformational impact on societies, economies and polities here and around the globe.”
Certainly the medium of Twitter has supported many noble journalistic and human rights initiatives. On the other hand, it’s also been used for countless (and some say increasing) cases of abuse and harassment. Should the one taking credit for all of Twitter’s noble uses escape accountability for the myriad of destructive uses?
But if you simply scroll further down WAC’s page, the mystery quickly clears:
Now the WAC has educated us in something again: that payola is alive and well in both tech and non-profit.