The annoyance of losing Twitter

Posted in Software on 21 October 2023

Twitter was a great place. I loved catching up with everyone’s updates. It painted a good picture for the most part.

I kept away from the dramas and trending sections. I consider myself political and would follow lots of left leaning accounts. There were some that were just looking for fights. To be political you have to be aggressive. I picked my battles and stayed away from trolls and accounts that only forwarded doom. Unless we’re talking about the 1993 video game, in which case I followed hundreds of accounts.

It was nice to see so many distant projects and people share their lives. I was never actively involved but I enjoyed watching from afar.

This didn’t happen overnight. It took a lot of curating.

Starting again

To start again in Threads and Mastodon is exhausting. Many of those people whose updates I dearly loved are no longer there. I’m sure new accounts will come and go and I’ll have that feeling of a home again.

I’m an active user of Facebook but I keep most of my interactions private. It’s a great place to keep up with friends and family.

Instagram is a similar place. I find myself posting more to share the beauty in the benign.

Threads is interesting in that it hasn’t found its place yet. It’s still a very early app and doesn’t have the following of its rivals. I hope this can be a great place for my creative projects.

The problem with the current state

There’s a problem and it’s called Meta.

As discussed I consider myself political. This means I can’t look at the behaviour of Meta and sleep well at night. They’re a company with a poor history, and I don’t feel good letting them use my data.

I feel similarly about Google, but they own my life. Every email I’ve sent since 2006 and everything I search for is recorded by them.

But I love it. I love the accuracy that my actions can be predicted even when I’m not sure myself. The stronghold of data these companies have it’s useful to me.

It’s a horrid paradox.

The future in decentralised social networks

I’ve found hope in Mastodon. It works really well and proves a decentralised web can work. But my following is not there. I follow mostly software developers and have yet to find musicians or writers or artists. Maybe I need to look harder.

The idea of a decentralised web is something I’ve wanted since I first logged in to MySpace. With the Fediverse it’s finally getting a chance. It’s been great to see it go from proof of concept to viable thing.

I want the open web and open source to win. But I will go with whatever is easiest for myself as a user. I want as little friction in what I do as possible. That’s why capitalism owns me.

It’s not good but it’s true.

Jack Gutteridge