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The French really get this one right
By Dave Winer on Monday, June 06, 2011 at 11:54 AM.

In the United States, the media are making a huge mistake re Twitter and Facebook by treating them as if they were open systems like the web or email. In fact, and they know this, they are corporations with eponymous services (that means the companies and the services have the same name). #

In France, in the spirit of being open to competition, the government has prohibited the media from using the names of the services unless the story is specifically about the company. I think this is very smart, compared to what we're doing and not doing here. #

A picture named mwom.gifIn the United States, not only do the media treat Twitter and Facebook as if they were public utilities, like the open web, it's actually even worse. The Library of Congress, which is part of the government, is subsidizing Twitter, by doing a complete archive of Twitter, before making a serious attempt at archiving the web. This helps cement Twitter as the medium of record, which is ridiculous. The market is just getting started. How can you justifiy the government taking sides over other equivalent (or better) ways to communicate, that are not owned by a company (like the web, for example). If this isn't against the law, to use taxpayer funds to help a company achieve dominance over competitors, it should be against the law.  #

Further, it's just plain dumb for the media to give special position to Twitter and Facebook. If it isn't inevitable that these companies compete with other media, the potential certainly is there. And since when do CBS reporters rely exclusively on NBC facilities to get their stories out. Or Fox, or CNN. Yet they all treat Twitter as if it were an non-profit platform like the web. #

Of course it would be better if the French media self-regulated so the government doesn't have to step in.  #

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