When Social Media first started, in the early 2000’s, I was all over it. Being a tech geek, Myspace, Hi5 and, Orkut where all the rage for me at the time. Then came Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and for a brief moment Google+. They we’re more polished services, and attracted more people (maybe not Google+), but by the early 2010’s the shininess of Social Media was wearing off, for me.

Facebook

When Facebook first appeared all my friends were on Hi5. Today I can’t say why we liked it so much. Maybe it was the wow factor of being able to connect with all your friends at the same time? An asynchronous LAN party of sorts, where geeks and non-geeks alike could share their experiences? Maybe it was just Web 2.0 being discovered by the masses?

Whatever it was, it was contagious. All of the sudden not only my friends, but my family had a Facebook account. My technological illiterate mother was spending hours playing Farmville on Facebook.

By the early 2010’s Facebook had too much makeup, and it couldn’t hide it’s ugly features.

  • Privacy settings changed place often enough that you could never tell where they actually where;
  • Whatever setting you changed, they were always ethereal, reverting to its default values, just often enough you would forget to check;
  • The constant imitation of other services features;

Eventually, it became too much for me. I don’t remember exactly why, but the moment the EU “Right to be Forgotten” law was passed, I Googled “Delete Facebook account” and just did it. – Yes, I’m aware of the irony.

Ever since that day, I can only feel vindicated by that decision. The multiple data privacy scandals, and the most recent 500 000 000 users data leak, where no data of mine was present, gave me a sense of relief (and, if I’m being honest, smugness towards all my friends who still have Facebook accounts).

Today, for me, Facebook looks like the something a Bond Villain would come up with, to get all the world secrets and sell to the highest bidder. – Dramatic, I know

Instagram

There’s not much I can say about Instagram. I liked it, even when Bond Villain Co, bought it, I still enjoyed it. I knew the consequences of using it, while clamming Facebook was horrible – I was a hypocrite. But somewhere between the 30% posts being ads, the stories, and the algorithm feed, Instagram was no longer something I enjoyed. Along with Facebook it had to go. It was only last month, but in Instagram too, I deleted my account.

Twitter

I have a weird relationship with twitter. I don’t think I’m the only one either.

I’ve had multiple Twitter account throughout the years. Deleted not out of outrage or smugness, but because at times I didn’t see the appeal.

But somewhere along my sporadic use, it started to make sense to me.

Twitter, in my opinion, is a service that sells Parasocial Interactions. “Follow this famous person, and react to what they have to say. They’re found in the same place you find your friends, and sometimes they might even react to you. The famous are just like your friends.”

It’s a megaphone of hot takes and miscommunication. A place where ideas can’t be fully expressed nor understood.

Having reach this understanding of twitter, I can now use it to my benefit. I barely post, except to give some feedback to a developer or friend. I do follow some people outside of my IRL social group, but only to keep up with news or something noteworthy.

Everything old, is new again, Twitter to me became RSS, with extra steps and a social graph.

One of the main things I do not enjoy about twitter though, the algorithm timeline. I want to see the post of the people I follow, and I want to see them as they are posted, not how Twitter thinks I should see them.

Maybe I should integrate Twitter into Ares?