Hey Twitter, it’s Time Someone Said It

I think I speak for more than a few reasonable people when I say I’ve about had it with Twitter. Three times this week I’ve been presented with the lockout screen because I followed a few dozen people.

Now we all know there are limits on the number of people we can follow. That’s enforced at the account level and is usually calculated by adding some margin to the number of followers you have. The more followers you have, the more people you can follow. Fair enough.

Then why is there a second and a third limit on the numbers of people I can follow (or unfollow) in some arbitrary time interval? Why not just leave it at the original limit? Well, the answer is pretty obvious. Twitter doesn’t want you doing too much communicating. The croppers might get uppity and out of control, dontcha know.

Here’s what needs to be said: Twitter is a worthless, pointless waste of bandwidth and air conditioning. It is a noise machine. It is a firehose of nonsense that nobody pays any attention to. It produces nothing of value. At all. It is about as useful as a rocket-powered unicycle.

Twitter’s LIFETIME stock value is -30%. The company basically lit fire to six billion dollars. If you had invested $10 in Twitter in 2013, it would be worth $7 now. Why? Because Twitter doesn’t produce anything except noise. For $21 billion I could rent a 747 and park it someplace with its engines running to produce all the noise I want and still have enough left over to do something useful, like create jobs or build a product people actually want to pay for.

Here’s the value proposition for you, dear user of Twitter. You know what this site does? It takes your hard work, in the form of tweets, videos, pictures, animation, links and so on, and it publishes them at Twitter.com. That gets Twitter more traffic.

What do you get in return? Well, if you follow this many people, nothing. If you follow this many people plus one, your account gets locked and you get a reading from the book of no-nos.

Let me tell you about my experience on Twitter so far. I have 8000 followers and change. Our account features Jessica Halloran and has been traditionally presented in her voice as a fictional character. We’ve posted 5200 tweets, many of which had full color art from our comics, games, books, book covers, videos, etc. Want to know how many referral clicks we’ve gotten from Twitter in the last nine years and seven months? (We joined in March of 2009)

835

That’s one click for every six tweets on average. Now that might sound pretty good, until you look a little closer. In 2009, Twitter had a tiny fraction of the number of users it has now. So you’d expect that since our tweets are getting better and our potential audience is growing, we’d be getting more clicks, right?

Since January, 2017 we’ve gotten 42. We got a total of 3 clicks in all of 2017.

Three clicks.

In the five-and-a-half year period between October of 2006 and July of 2012, when we were publishing our comics, ladystar.net generated over 218,000 uniques.  That’s roughly 100 visits a day.  LadyStar produced more traffic in nine days than our lifetime total on Twitter produced in nine years.

Now I’m not going to say this reminds me of the 179 clicks I got from Facebook that I thought were “targeted” for English-speakers in the U.S. but turned out to be from anywhere-but-America, but what I am going to say is this reminds me of the 179 clicks I got from Facebook that I thought were “targeted” for English-speakers in the U.S. but turned out to be from anywhere-but-America.

I’d really like to participate on Twitter, but the reality is Twitter isn’t going to allow us to communicate with our followers or find new ones without constantly interfering and threatening to close down our account. So we’re leaving.

Those of you investing time and energy in Twitter, I recommend you consider what I’ve written here. Twitter is not the least bit interested in you, and they have no obligation to protect your account or do anything valuable for your life or business. All they are doing, ultimately, is trying to profit from your relationships with others and sell your hard work to advertisers while giving exactly nothing back. The same is true of Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat and all the other noise factories out there.

Social media is a waste of time.  I say this as someone who was doing business on the Internet when Mark Zuckerberg was in sixth grade. The people who tell you they are getting zillions of sales and visits from social media are either lying or they are leaving something out, like the bill for their paid ads, which is a taffy wad of stupid I’ll reserve for another post.

Set up your own site. Make real connections with other people. Don’t give Twitter the power to interfere in your life and business. Black out.

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