Inspired by Matt Haughey’s stand against Twitter, I re-logged into Mastodon on all my devices and shelved my Twitter access. I haven’t gone to quite the extreme that Matt did by nuking my Twitter presence, but I’m consciously choosing to not engage there for the time being.
I’ve felt some of the same things Matt talks about in his post, although not nearly to the extremes that he experienced. And that’s from two white dudes; the constant stories of harassment, hate speech, and outright calls for violence that women, minorities, and marginal groups experience on a daily basis is unfathomable to me.
Twitter is a cesspool. Logging on is an exercise in sifting through a torrent of the worst of humanity in order to find a single, shiny moment of joy from a friend or awesome person somewhere in the world. Those moments are not just fewer and further apart, they are dulled by their being adjacent to an environment so toxic, it’s hard to comprehend.
Twitter has chosen this state, however, because it makes them money. Outrage is the one thing people seem to have infinite amounts of, and Twitter is more than happy to turn that into clicks, ads, and millions of dollars. I can’t support that, no more than I can support Facebook’s model of turning personal lives into highly-targeted advertising streams.
For now, I’m using Mastodon through Octodon.Social (I’m https://octodon.social/@ryanvis). It’s not the same, clearly, because many of the things I liked Twitter for aren’t there, at least not yet. Of all the people I followed on Twitter, three were on Mastodon.
I also feel like I will miss those organic moments on Twitter where something I am truly interested in will pop into my timeline. I’m hoping this will start to happen on Mastodon as folks re-ignite their dormant accounts or create new ones; we’ll see.