You know what really grinds my gears? Twitter.
I know, I know. “Twitter is annoying” isn’t a revolutionary take by any means. In fact, it’s not wholly true. Despite the messiness of the bird app, it’s still a great platform for getting information and news, laughing your ass off at all kinds of humour and, let’s face it, stalking your crushes and their crushes.
That said, there’s so much about twitter that leaves a lot to be desired.
1. Appearance based insults
When I see people come after each others looks, it distresses me because there’s so much societal value placed in being beautiful or attractive that comments about how they don’t fit that mold can seriously mess with a person’s self-esteem. I wish folks would consider that before telling someone they’re ugly. And besides being a douche bag move, insulting someone’s looks is just plain lazy.
Another reason I hate appearance based insults is because of another frustrating thing…
2. When people forget catfish exist
The other problem with insulting someone’s looks is that you may not even be insulting the person behind the account. It’s very easy and all too common for innocent people to end up as the object of ridicule.
Take it from someone moonlighting on twitter as an erotica author. You’d never know it was me based on any of the photos I post because they’re all free stock photos.
Besides the ridicule factor, another frustrating thing online is when users take accounts at their face value.
The other day I saw a thread of faces of Paedophiles on Twitter. I wholeheartedly agree with the thread’s sentiment but there is the possibility of mistakenly defaming someone. In some countries, posting a thread like that could also mean opening oneself up to legal action.
All I’m saying is, we need to take better care and remember that appearances aren’t everything.
It’s not just twitter that is rife with stolen and reposted content but it is one of the worst offenders. We all see people paraphrasing or straight up copying viral tweets but lately I have noticed an increase in threads that are just rip offs of articles and off-site content.
As a digital content creater myself, that irks me something awful. It’s really hard to come up with content and for people to just steal and benefit from someone else’s work is nothing short of an injustice.
4. Brands Who Forget They are Brands
These days brands are more sassy, funny and engaging than ever before. More and more brands are taking advantage of online spaces to reach their base with “personality”.
Unfortunately, there are so many others who get the game wrong and tweet as if they are people. You’ll find them making questionable jokes or engaging in Twitter’s messiness all in the name of sass without realising they are alienating customers. It’s bad business and it’s annoying.
5. Shared context is basically impossible
Twitter is a like a classroom full of kindergartners, middle-schoolers, high-schoolers, college students and people who got all their info from being probed by aliens. Does that sound like a good classroom?
Every twitter user comes with their own level of understanding, prejudices and other such things that make discussions on the platform difficult, if not impossible.
Whether they’re outright lies or embellished truths, twitter is full of misinformation. The truth, they say, is dead and in the post-truth era, misinformation has never been so dangerous. And on twitter, it is difficult to correct lies or stop them.
7. Information Overload
It’s so easy to get overwhelmed by twitter. It’s not just the volume of info, it’s the diversity. On this one app, there are texts of revolution, shitposts, dad jokes, cries for help, kikis, shameless self promotion…the list goes on forever. It can be a lot for someone to take in.
The superiority complexes of twitter users is beyond any other app, in my opinion. No other social media users are more ready to show others how much better they are at living, earning, thinking, fucking, working, etc, than tweeps. When you think about how Twitter is essentially the internet’s global village, it’s no surprise that like in real life, there is rampant elitism on the platform. And just like real life, it’s plenty aggravating.
9. Glass Houses
You know the phrase, “Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones”? Twitter doesn’t. Time and time again, we see people rally against [insert shady thing] while they themselves engage in [other shady thing]. Is it hypocrisy? Is it human nature? Either way, we continually see people miss their blindspots while crusading against ills. If only it was easier to turn our critical gazes inward.
10. We Are Products
Twitter is free because its users are the product. We are audiences for advertisers, brands and personalities, and for each other. All other things come secondary to this.
The fact that we’re a product means interact in ways that don’t recognize each others full personhood. We forget that it’s a person, not an opinion, behind these accounts. That makes it easy to over glorify some figures and to crucify others based on their content rather than to extend them the humanity we would in real life.
11. The Algorithm
One of the most frustrating parts of Twitter is the algorithm that decides what will show up on your timeline. Basically, twitter prioritizes content it thinks you’ll “like” and tries to show you that first. I put “like” in quotes because the algorithm actually shows you what you’ll most likely engage with or what will make you stay on the app for longer.
Most of the time this means anger-inducing posts, controversial tweeters, stupid mundane shit or posts full of aggro…a.k.a the very worst Twitter has to offer.
That’s my list! What grinds your gears about Twitter? Leave a comment below.
PS: Is it hypocritical for me to plug my twitter account? I’m just asking to look polite – you can follow me @pastichemode.