Twitter: Goodbye, I Quit


My goal was to keep this post short. I wanted to, at first, keep it at 140 characters but that felt generally impossible. This line here is already 152.

I have mentioned in a few blog posts already that I had planned on quitting Twitter I just wasn’t sure the timing. Well, last night, that moment came. Not via some big flashy event but rather like the breaking of a small mental toothpick.

The proverbial “straw that broke the camel’s back” perhaps.

I really liked Twitter at one point in time. For a few years after I first joined I had a grand old time using the service. I didn’t think it was “innovative” but rather something that just worked on the web better than anything else.

But it became a burden. Overtime I realized that it was becoming dramatically unhealthy for me to open myself up to so many voices on such an even playing field. And I’ve systematically pruned my use of the so-called “social web” by reducing my usage globally, killing off a ton of social media accounts, killing blog comments, and now Twitter.

I simply do not have the emotional, psychological, and physical bandwidth to manage Twitter. I take everything at face value and I take everything really personally. It’s just how I am and Twitter is unhealthy for someone like me. I’ve been coping with Twitter for years and it’s time to pull the plug.

As I continue to limit the amount of “access” that others may have digitally I am relieved because the flip-side of the coin is that I have chosen to maximize the access that specific people in my life have that are vastly more important to me.

My wife and my girls take the top spots (and the largest spots). My friends (the very few that I really have) and my extended family have been prioritized next and finally my business partners. And that’s about as far as it gets for me. I don’t make any apologies for this – it is what it is.

My own account (@Saddington) will become a “placeholder” of sorts, a’la Seth Godin who has two Twitter accounts, the first is his proper name and the second simply tweets his blog posts:

The motive is that no one would grab the username and pose as me (this has already happened, btw…) and some of my blog readers connect to this blog specifically through Twitter (analytics show this clearly in user behavior).

I don’t have any pithy final words… I don’t have any “lessons learned” or eloquent statements to make… nor do I want my decision to be interpreted as some moral imperative for others or anything close to prescriptive; rather, I think we all need to make our own independent decisions about our use of technology and choose wisely and well our investment in each one of them.

Time is running short for you and I… are you sure you’re using what you’ve got left on the most important stuff? I ask myself that every single day.

So, with that… Twitter, goodbye, I quit.

[These two blog posts were great though. Well worth a read.]

Author: John

Hacker. Human.