I was just a fan of Twitter for so many years going back to…what, 2006? Yeah, it could get noisy and messy, but at least there were some guardrails and rules. It wasn’t perfect but if you were looking for breaking news and hot takes on something happening right now, Twitter was hard to beat.
I also loved it because Twitter allowed me to get info from/about me out to tens of thousands of followers instantly. That included everything from links to music stories I’d found/written to personal messages about…well, whatever I thought people might want to know about.
Then came Elon Musk.
First, he fired most everyone. Then he started implementing his idea of free speech, which, when you think of it, wasn’t very free at all. The whole bullsh*t with blue checkmarks, turning it from a microblogging platform capable of hist posts of thousands of words, and the ill-conceived payment schemes, changed the overall vibe of the platform. The trolling got worse. Some APIs stopped working. TweetDeck, my go-to multi-account monitor, is in trouble. And just this past week, Elon limited the number of tweets non-paying people can read.
Meanwhile, users grumbled. Advertisers bailed. Revenue cratered. Service got spotty. People lost their identities to someone who just bought verification under false pretenses. It’s a total sh*tshow. Yet I’m hanging on.
However, I’ve begun hedging my bets. I’m still waiting to be approved for Blue Sky, Jack Dorsey’s (as in the founder of Twitter) Twitter substitute. Despite being pre-registered for weeks, I’ve heard bupkis. So when Mark Zuckerberg–another guy who has squandered all kind kinds social and political goodwill with Facebook–announced Threads, his Twitter killer, I decided to take a look. And so far, I like what I see,
Threads is available for both iOS and Android. It’s a snap to set up. Info can be imported from your Instagram account. At first poke, it seems intuitive to use. Threads piggybacks on Instagram yet works separately as a short messaging platform. I’m hoping that other companies will incorporate APIs that will allow for automatic posting to Threads.
Note, too, that we haven’t heard Zuckerberg spout anything about the metaverse recently. Maybe that’s dead. If it is, best the company move on. This could be a very positive thing. But we’ll see. I’m just happy there’s a Twitter alternative. Sure, I could have moved to Mastodon, but it hasn’t had the mainstream uptake that I need. I’m sure it’s very good, but…
I’m going to keep posting on Twitter for now, but I’m also going to move a lot of content through Threads–which, by the way, as music copyright agreements. Twitter is being sued for US$250 million for music copyright violations.
I still need to play with things, but I kinda feel this is Zuckerberg’s real revenge on Musk. Forget the billionaire cage match. Just build a better goddamn mousetrap.
Should you wish to sign up for Threads and follow me, my handle is the same as it is through Instagram: @alan_crossx. See you over there!