So dear reader it's The first week of July 2023 and the world is still hot with technological tantrums. First we had Reddit and now Twitter. Both of which are not at a full blown melt down yet, but are no longer very promising.
So it seems these past few weeks the SNS or social media world has been stumbling around like a drunkard lately making me a bit aware of my strange "addiction" to Twitter. But I think this Twitter mess is the straw that is breaking the camels back as they say.
In Japan, Twitter falls under "SNS" which is "Social Network Services", it's basically like "Social media" but it includes communication apps such as LINE and Twitter. But Twitter is almost the poster child of SNS, or at least that is my perception.
The flip side of that logic is Twitter might be unpopular or less used in other countries so you might not see it the same way as I do.
I don't want to generalise anymore so this is more about how Twitter fits my use case.
I use to see Twitter as a public notice board, a place where I could get a quick glimpse at what is happening in society and what sales/events are taking place. The ease of communication/information transmission it brought has no competitor, it fulfilled a unique role with official accounts for nearly everything.
But here is the major problem, that public notice board aspect of it is now history, Tweets are locked behind log in and even if you log in and use the service too much you will get an error making it absolutely useless! It seems that heavy twitter users burn through their new "limitations" within an hour.
All of this just so other services can't scrape Twitters data, data which is being publicly shared. I am repulsed. These official accounts are trying to reach an audience with their notifications not to play chit-chat, which Twitter seems to believe it is first and foremost.
Seems like it's committing suicide, doesn't it? It's begun scaring away even a detached observer like me. Thanks to its recent antics, I'm stranded, led astray to find another trove of updates and news. I considered Bluesky, even applied for an invite months ago, which hasn't arrived yet. However currently their "Skeets" (Bluesky's version of a tweet) operates with similar drama – you have to be logged into their app to view it. However, that is not to say the "Skeets" are not public, at the moment it's just a bit tricky as it's still in beta, and obviously I've never used it yet so I don't know for sure. But Bluesky do pride themselves on there new AtProtocol where you own or control your own data which just "feels good".
You can get a glimpse of Bluesky's skeets on a "firehose" like service like https://firesky.tv/.
Don't worry dear reader the term "firehose" was new to me as well. It basically means a stream of data in real time. Without being there it looks quite lively.
Twitter's recent missteps have caused it to trip over its SEO rankings, like a toddler experimenting with walking. A graveyard of dead links now litter the internet. How naive. We're now left with useless, inaccessible past tweets. They are not just blocking the big bad scary "AI", but also web crawlers and regular people. You know what's worse? They know what they're doing and they're seemingly proud of it.
The irony is without seeing what's on Twitter I have lost a pulse on society and I don't know what peoples opinions on it is or how this walling off has affected the business who use it as a notification service. I had to get my impression of the Twitter changes, on the News about Twitter's changes.
Now dear reader with this walking mess you have to ask yourself, do I really even want to make an account or login to this mess? For me personally the answer is a "NO". It's repulsing me so hard.
It's lost its allure and I don't want it in my vicinity. It comes off as an unimpressive, desperate try-hard, like Elon Musk at a Gen Z party. And don't even get me started on Musk...
On the flip side, Reddit's drama flew right past me. I don't understand why some folks even bother including 'Reddit' in their Google search bar. It's beyond me. Why invite unnecessary headaches with others' opinions cluttering your brain?
But it's safe to say Reddit's SEO and links also caused a problem, but it had less of an affect on me. But if you were affect by Reddit during their little tantrum you would have some understanding of what the Twitter tantrum means to me.
Amid this tech crisis, the announcement of Facebook/Instagram's Threads stirred a hint of curiosity in me. Threads seems like a decent clone but don't be fooled, it has its hang-ups. A misplaced word there and you could lose your account which ties together your Facebook, Instagram, maybe even your Oculus Rift. Moreover, given how censored Instagram is who would want to write words which involves any interaction with another person? With Twitter swiftly digging its own grave, and Bluesky moving at tortoise speeds, there's something to be said about the timing of Threads. It appears designed for failure but heck, it might just stumble into success, this is surely the definition of "at the right place at the right time".
At the time of writing Threads is planing to launch within the next 24 hours I'm keeping tabs. Maybe I'd even join, driven to desperation for a viable Twitter alternative. As for Bluesky, it's got potential, but it's also got some ugly baggage. That'll be gossip for another time.
We also have to talk about the elephant in the room, Mastodon. Unfortunately this does not appeal to me. Seriously, who thought making an account should feel like solving a jigsaw puzzle? I just gave up the moment I had to look for an "instance" and everything just had weird names. The service name is weird, you would have to find an instance somewhere by first Googling how to use Mastodon it just was such a turn off.
But what really grinds my gears is its pathetic SEO. I mean, Google practically ignores it. So, if you're searching for something, don't hold your breath for a relevant Mastodon post. Which means it does not fulfil the role of Twitter has in Japan.
These coming days will be interesting, I have read up more on what Threads has to offer but everything right now feels like they are just rushing a product out, but the time is right. But let me throw my prediction in, I don't think "Threads" will win here, it has too much going against it.