The beginning of the end started when the tweets about the startup that was scraping people's public social media profiles and then processing the content through AI came to light. I'm not surprised, but I was shocked. I fully expected that someone was probably doing "smart" sentiment analysis on public timelines, but these reports were raising behavioral flags over people having used curse words in tweets. That Twitter allows these kinds of applications to tie into their platform is insane and outrageous to me.
I know I have posted plenty of tweets with any of the most common curse words you know, so I started digging through my own ~3.2k tweets from over the last six years. What I discovered is that I posted a lot of "Agreed" posts in responses to stuff other people were posting. These posts are obviously trivial and worthless. I culled those along with tweets with curse words in them... and then I kept going. However some tweet threads I copied over here, into my website.
As I write this, I've brought my tweet count down to less than 850. This wasn't easy to do, either. Twitter advanced search won't even surface all of your tweets if you search for your handle within an certain timeframe. After a certain point, your timeline just stops scrolling down. Their platform is making is incredibly difficult if not impossible to get access to stuff YOU posted yourself, which is also insane to me. I had to use a third-party tool.
Last week I took the week off from Twitter. I deleted the app from my phone and turned off notifications elsewhere. I guess it's difficult to realize how negative that platform is and how negative it can make you feel/your perceptions until you actually leave it behind for a while. I suppose all of this is a side-effect of being "extremely online." Yes, a lot of that negativity was lamentations from many voices in the Apple/Mac-sphere who are displeased with the financialization of what used to be an innovative and wholesome company. I stopped listening to Apple-focused podcasts years ago because of this same issues.
I started thinking about how to set up some transmission boundaries/barriers between me and this world of negativity. It's not like I'm a high profile person with a hyperactive handle, but maybe I was making myself too open to all of this. Maybe we all are. Here's what I decided: Effective immediately I'm going to cease posting new tweets and content to my Twitter account. All new content will appear here on this site as either a regular post or a threaded micro-blog post. This should dramatically lower the amount of negativity I come into contact with, as well as solve the problem of a social media platform holding my own content hostage. It's also safe here. I have delibertly NOT set up Google Analytics or any other kind of trackers on this site. I don't know who you are, when or where you're visiting from. I'm even using stock, web-safe browser fonts so Google and Adobe can't slurp that browsing history up either.
Having said that, I will still be checking my DMs from time to time. If you have any interest, I'd love for you to add my RSS feed to your reader. I will keep my postings here much more upbeat and informative than what Twitter posts typically lends themselves to. I'd also love to add your RSS feed to my reader.