I’m leaving Twitter today, not exactly earth shaking news–even to my 33 followers–but it’s been a long time coming and it was a easy decision after reading Lindy West’s article I Quit Twitter And It Feels Great. I’ve realized that every time I’m on Twitter I walk away feeling even more anxious and angry than I do normally. Believe me, there’s a lot out there to give a progressive like me an ulcer. But this bit in West’s article made it easier to flip the bird:
The internet makes neighbors of us all, and my conscience demanded I put some virtual real estate between myself and the befuddled, racist mobster seemingly determined to dismantle and loot the republic. If seeding nuclear war wasn’t a violation of Twitter’s terms of service, then Twitter wasn’t a service I wanted to endorse.
Ever since the election Trump’s tweets have felt like:
There is no story in Twitter, but rather it’s the equivalent of an global id of fast food morsels tossed out on a parking lot. And like squawking gulls, most of us snarf the information; leaving us for a moment feeling full of indignation, fury or sadness, yet strangely empty hours later. Other reasons I’m quitting? Since I follow a lot of people with whom I agree and respect, Twitter often feels like an echo chamber, another place to get confirmation bias. I find enough of that on Facebook. I’ve already mentioned the anger and anxiety I feel reading about all the bad shit going down, and I’ve realized that unless a horde of zombies are shambling down the street, there are better ways to stay informed and not raise my cortisol levels. Finally, while for me Twitter’s not a total time sink–I’m looking at you Facebook–it doesn’t make me feel productive, so unplugging it feels freeing.
There will be a few I miss following on Twitter including Ana Navarro, David Simon, Patton Oswalt , and of course Dylan (she’s just going to have to text me!) But the one I’m going to miss the most will be The Thoughts of Dog.
Didn’t we once say that on the internet nobody knows you’re a dog? Given where we stand, historically speaking, maybe we’d be better off if most of our social media was left to the dogs, cats and birds?
**My Twitter stats: I’ve tweeted 487 times, 90% of those retweets, I followed 196 tweeters (can’t say they’re all people) and have liked 5, 499 tweets.