Disappointment in Twitter
I have tried multiple challenges in the past year to get me posting consistently on Twitter:
- Writual Ship 20 (a custom challenge I ran with the Writual writing group, based on Ship30for30)
I started but never completed any of these challenges.
There are people who are amazing at using Twitter and are able to unlock its full potential. Some of them excitedly encourage everyone to follow suit. I've concluded that it's not for everybody.
I'm not a big fan of social media. So it feels forced to leverage it to my benefit. There's a marketing aspect to it that I dislike. I understand that self-marketing is an important skill for everyone (at least that's what marketing people claim), but if I don't enjoy it, is it worth it?
Another concern is whether its a good use of my time. It's easy to go down rabbit trails and fall into rage traps. The pro-Twitter folk make a good point of curating your feed so that it only adds value. I have tried this. But here are the kinds of tweets I find:
- Self-help, advice, tips, ideas, quotes
This gets old after awhile. Some of it is practical, but a lot of it has to be filtered to what would be applicable to me. Some threads are so dense with gold nuggets of interesting information, it feels overwhelming. I end up just reading it, then moving on. The amount of change implemented in my life based on these kinds of tweets, compared with the time spent reading and sifting through them, isn't that great.
- Financial sphere: venture capital, crypto
I'm into crypto. But many crypto tweets are promotion, price prediction, and arguments which don't add value. There seems to be a lot of VC people on Twitter, and many of the people in the courses I take are into them. So I keep finding this make its way into my feed, when I'm simply not interested.
- Meaningless tweets by friends
I tend to follow people who I get to know in online courses. They tweet some interesting stuff. But many times they also tweet drivel that I don't care about.
This is one thing to avoid if you want a clean, valuable feed. But even if I don't follow people who discuss politics, it always comes up, whether it's someone I follow liking or replying to a tweet by someone else I don't follow, or people in the comments turning the conversation to the political.
- Content by people I don't follow
Twitter's algorithm wants me paying attention to their platform, and constantly recommends people and shows tweets I'm not interested in. I have blocked many of the sidebar sections, and use advanced web element blocking to clean up the feed. There's no way to turn off showing likes/replies by people I follow on tweets of people I don't follow.
I have tried TweetDeck and alternative mobile apps. I've tried muting words. I don't care about analytics and numbers showing how tweets perform.
I've tried ignoring/removing the feed completely, and only focus on posting. But I still get notifications if people reply. I don't want to ignore them. And then I get curious and check their profile.
Ultimately, I still get distracted. Perhaps I'm not using Twitter "the right way." That's okay. Even the people who love Twitter admit that they spend a lot of time on it. I tried, and learned Twitter is just not a game I'm interested in playing. Maybe it's a personality thing. Maybe it's a perfectionist thing. (Can't edit misspellings in tweets without deleting and starting over, which feels bad if someone already liked or replied to it. There's also a looming fear that something I say may be taken wrongly, offending people, and in the worst-case scenario, gets me "cancelled.")
I still want to write consistently and concisely in public. So that's why I'm now trying this Ship It. If someone finds this on my website, people can go out of their way if they want to see my posts, instead of being fed my questionably valueless musings by Twitter's algorithm.