I’m tweeting no more, at least for a while, so I gotta put my thoughts somewhere (public). A few goals in quitting Twitter:
1. Think and write in a longer format. I have been thinking in tweets. Even the conscious amount I’ve been doing of this is disturbing, and I can’t imagine how much its been pervading other ways of thinking. When your most frequent creative output is 140 characters, you’re bound to develop something of a 140-character character.
2. Get away from the trolls. For almost two years, I’ve tried to endear myself to the menchen and frauen of the schadenfreude kingdom. They’re funny people, many of them are cool, sometimes they’re capable of some pretty great social and media commentary, but bullying is their bread and butter. These folk take a hard line on trolls, but there’s a shared impulse to enjoy the suffering of others. At my closest to them, I received arbitrary affirmation in the form of retweets, favorites, and comments on Twitter (still not sure what made some tweets more worthy than others). If these are the nuggets amid a backdrop of indifference and snark, no thanks.
3. Greater control over my thoughts. "To some degree, it is choosing to subject ourselves to thousands of ads throughout the day, but ones that come from trusted sources we care about, so they’re actually impactful." I’ve been using Twitter as a pretty bad RSS reader for a couple of years. Instead I’m going to use an RSS reader.
4. Greater control over my mood. Conflicts are endemic on Twitter. If you engage with people at all, even with the best of intentions, messages will be misinterpreted and conflict will arise, often leading to a premature block and the end of a conversation. It’s inevitable that many 140-character, semi-broadcast messages with context only of other messages bearing mostly no relation to said messages will be misunderstood. On Twitter, it’s uniquely easy to assume the worst and end a conversation (forever) with a click.
I owe Twitter a lot. My presence on there is part of the reason I have my current (great) job. And Twitter is how I met maybe the first person who really seems to completely get where I’m coming from. The platform has a pretty incredible capacity to connect people. It’s an unprecedented real-time zeitgeist of a massive portion of the world’s population.
But Twitter giveth, and Twitter taketh away, and these days, for me, it seems to taketh much more than giveth. So smell you later, Twitter.
More blogs to come because I have no where else to put this stuff.