Speaking at a tech conference in Toronto on Tuesday, Twitter co-founder Ev Williams sat down with CNN to talk about Donald Trump's Twitter habit.
Williams says that the president is a "master" of Twitter, and uses it to great affect to control his own narrative for a certain segment of his base.
But, Williams suggests that Trump's Twitter presence is "trivial compared to the effect of the broader media."
"The vast majority of the electorate is not on Twitter reading Trump's tweets and being convinced by that. What they're convinced much more by is the destructive power of Fox News, which is much, much more powerful and much more destructive than Twitter."
He goes on to say that the mainstream (and right-wing) media have been quick to vilify social media for a variety of reasons, but he echoes sentiments felt around Silicon Valley that platforms like Facebook and Twitter have only played a small role in reflecting, and at times amplifying, the larger polarized landscape of the US.
"Why the media's not critiquing itself I think is kind of obvious, and it's very easy to blame the tech platforms," Williams says.
Trump meanwhile stormed out of a meeting with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Congressional Democrats today which was supposed to be about infrastructure. Trump was fuming, as the New York Times reports, because Pelosi has publicly said earlier today that Trump was engaged in "a cover-up."
"He then marched out into the Rose Garden, where reporters had been gathered, and delivered a statement bristling with anger as he demanded that Democrats 'get these phony investigations over with,'" per the Times, adding that the Democrats couldn't legislate while they're still investigating him.
He then went on Twitter to say the Dems are "so sad."
So sad that Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer will never be able to see or understand the great promise of our Country. They can continue the Witch Hunt which has already cost $40M and been a tremendous waste of time and energy for everyone in America, or get back to work....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 22, 2019
....But they really want a do-over! You can’t investigate and legislate simultaneously - it just doesn’t work that way. You can’t go down two tracks at the same time. Let Chuck, Nancy, Jerry, Adam and all of the rest finish playing their games....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 22, 2019
....Democrat leadership is tearing the United States apart, but I will continue to set records for the American People – and Nancy, thank you so much for your prayers, I know you truly mean it!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 22, 2019
A little info-graphic that Trump had on his podium at the Rose Garden actually cited a $53 million figure for the investigation, and that info-graphic has, naturally, become a meme — where else? — on Twitter.
Stunning news from the Rose Garden today pic.twitter.com/7bFdpJdaj4— joey alison sayers (@joeyalison) May 22, 2019