I think people should stop reading Twitter. Or at least dramatically reduce its usage. It has no redeeming features and no good uses whatsoever. The short form reduces complex issues to blatant idiocy. All of the massively popular tweets I have read – all of them, 100% – were manipulative, dishonest and idiotic. It brings more stupidity to the world. FB and Instagram often maintain the existing stupidity but Twitter makes more of it.

People who spend a lot of time on Twitter evoke an abject, bone-chilling terror in me. I like Facebookers because they want to connect. I like Instagramers because they want to be creative. I like LinkedIners because they want to succeed. I like bloggers because they are quixotically idealistic. I have no feelings about Snapchatters because I have no idea what they do. But passionate Twitterers simply scare me.

14 thoughts on “Twitterers

  1. There’s some good Twitterers, just choose the right ones. (Which is not easy, of course)

    LinkedIn is even less useful (but way more intelligent) than Twitter.


    1. I’m not on LinkedIn because academics in my field don’t go there. But my sister is getting tons of use out of it.

      I get a sinking feeling every time somebody quotes me on Twitter because every new Twitterer who finds might be the one that costs me my job. I’m scared of it.


  2. Several of my former students from years ago have been adding me on Linkedin. I don’t think I have ever “joined” Linkedin and I have no idea how to use it. What does it do? Is it like Facebook with a more professional focus? Or??


  3. I have never followed anyone on Twitter, and I have read maybe a dozen Twitter posts in my life. I cannot imagine wanting to post there, although the increase in the maximum permissible post length means a 1% increase in my interest. (Of course, 1% of zero is zero.)


  4. I spend a fair amount of time in the flash-fiction corner of literary Twitter (under the pseudonym I use for my fiction). It’s a pretty friendly place and people mostly post links to their new published work. There are also fun activities like #vss365 — the challenge of writing a tweet-length story with a given daily prompt word. I’ve met quite a few friendly tweeps and beta-readers for my fiction (I also read their drafts). To me, it has been instrumental in learning more about the publishing markets in various genres and finding a sense of community for the endeavor.

    I have another Twitter account with the same pseud with which I comment here, and I use it to dip my toe into academic Twitter, but I’m not too active there. I don’t find the community particularly interesting or lively, and I log in once every few days, if that. Many folks who have academic blogs are on Twitter, but I don’t see their Twitter activity as appealing to follow.

    I don’t use FB, Instagram, Snapchat, or LinkedIn at all. Blogging


  5. I’ve found Twitter quite useful for asking questions about stuff I’m interested in – the character limit encourages people to drop a quick line to an expert about it, and encourages the experts to answer. I don’t think there’s any sort of social media where you can just ask someone from a team that put a robot on Mars something about the robot you can’t find in published media, and actually get your answer.

    Politics/social issues Twitter is a hellhole, though. These things require reflection, not just decontextualized snippets


  6. Absolutely. Twitter has done more to increase the total amount of stupidity in the world than any other invention of the digital age. It’s absolutely no accident that Trump is the twitter president.

    What really puzzles me is: while there are many great things about the internet, everyone agrees that the major downside is the population of trolls, psychos and crazy people. And yet twitter seems to be designed to restrict your ability to control who you interact with. How is that plus? I’m told that such control is possible but seems involve an inordinate amount of effort spent on filtering and curating. I’m glad I never joined.


    1. I agree. Trump can’t live without it. What does it tell us about it? At the very least, that it’s not a medium that transmits nuanced, profound thought by well-informed people.


  7. I’m don’t have a Twitter account, but I do check out some Twitter users on a daily basis. For me, it’s useful because certain users often offer alternative, left perspectives that challenge the mainstream liberal perspective on MSNBC, and they often link to interesting articles. Also, I enjoy SJW Twitter because the shallowness and stupidity are too funny (and sad).


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