Why you Should Quit Twitter

Toxic people, demeaning comments and spreading stupidity are just the surface. Underneath lies our own worst self.

Kostas Farmakis
Aug 14, 2019 · 4 min read
Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash

When was the last time you RT’d (RT, not a reply) a ridiculous and absurd tweet, just to prove that the poster is wrong?

How often do you browse through your feed to find the next “stupid person” to make fun of?

What is your primary motive when you write a tweet? Do you tweet to offer some new and valuable information? To reward an account that you follow and admire? Or to show to anyone that you are smarter than the others?

It took me eight years and over 30.000 tweets to realize that I was part of a community that made me sad. Twitter a medium that everything absurd is promoted, everything extreme is spread, and everything sane is attacked viciously.

I made it my mission to alter this. I was continually searching for someone less smart than me to torment. I was looking for mistakes online (tweets, media titles, etc.), and I made sure I broadcasted them to the world (my followers, actually) to make me seem smarter. Over the last year of my presence, I was angry, ranting about everything.

It took me 8 years and more than 30.000 tweets to realize that I was part of a community that made me sad.

But all I was doing was spreading the stupidity.

Most people don’t realize that if you want to criticize something, you first have to promote it. And when you promote it, it becomes known, it is spread and (sometimes) gets viral. And then everyone knows about it and talks about it while your opinion is lost in the buzz.

Congratulations, you ’ve just been outsmarted by a stupid person. And it’s all your fault.

A “protest tweet” (like a protest vote) is usually wrong. In the best-case scenario, you make a dumb person famous. In the worst case, you help extremist views and fringe opinions to spread, thus normalize them.

A thousand smart people will happily RT a stupid view to criticize it, giving it a dominant position over moderate or well-thought opinions. A thousand stupid people will never RT a well-thought idea (they just don’t get it), but they will happily spread other stupid comments because they agree with them or find them interesting. That’s how fake news is spread, that’s how extremist views are normalized.

A thousand smart people will happily RT a stupid view in order to criticize it. A thousand stupid people will never RT a well thought opinion. They just don’t get it.

Twitter is a place where stupidity wins just by sheer numbers. If you are a sane and moderate person, and you want to gain popularity, followers, and RTs, you have to play by the rules of the majority. And that means to enter the cage with the monkeys.

Source: http://www.freeportpress.com/bye-bye-birdie-twitter-execs-fly-the-coop/

Slowly, but continuously, you adopt their worst practices. You decide to fight “fire with fire,” which, in this case, means to be just like them. You prey over other users, ready to attack at their slightest mistake. Swears rapidly replace your sarcasm. Your wit is useless; you use plain and clear demeaning words. Your online experience becomes a relentless “search and destroy” for opinions, facts, and claims that are obviously wrong (or so you say).

It’s a dog-eat-dog situation where your agility skills are worthless and what you need is a pair of fangs, two pairs of fast legs and a pack to join.

Now your worst self is out in the open. It’s a dog-eat-dog situation where your agility skills are worthless, and what you need is a pair of fangs, two pairs of fast legs, and a pack to join. It’s like a “Walking Dead” situation where you think you ’re among the living people, and one day, you realize that you are as dead as it gets, walking, screaming, and retweeting.

You’re one of them now.

And then you know it’s time to quit.

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Kostas Farmakis

Written by

I write for the living for the past 30 years. Expert in digital life, tech and traveling. Currently learning code and stand-up comedy. Don’t know my endgame.

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