Since I joined Twitter in 2008, I’ve seen it evolve and transform in ways that I liked and in ways I did not. I’ve also evolved as a Twitter user and social media user in general. But recently, I really took time to examine my Twitter feed, and I really did not like what I was seeing.
If your feed is perhaps like mine, there were about 8 to 10 people who tweeted so often and prolifically, they dominated my feed. I would scroll down, and see multiple tweets, retweets, and likes from these same people over and over and over again. They were actually preventing me, unless I scrolled through their endless contributions to my feed, from seeing many of the others I follow. It’s as if these individuals were “yelling so loudly, they were drowning out all the other voices I’ve purposely followed.
What did I do to resolve this issue? It was rather simple actually, I unfollowed these feed dominators. I took some time and examined my timeline and observed these shouters and simply clicked the unfollow button.
Now, I’ve begun to see some of the long lost individuals that I followed that had all but disappeared from my timeline. Like a room with a lot of shouters trying to scream ever louder to be heard, I got rid of the “chief-noise-makers.” Now, I can once again see many of those who might have something more substantial to say.
Admittedly, I was once one of those shouters myself. I tweeted, retweeted as fast as I could click the Tweet Button. But with time, I’ve come to some conclusions about Twitter specifically and social media generally: How can anyone hear anything with all the shouting going on that room known as Twitterverse? I also come to realize that by constantly blasting the world with my Tweets, I really wasn’t contributing anything substantial to the conversation, as if such conversations are even possible on Twitter. I really did not have that much substantially to say that required such constant clicking.
Perhaps fundamentally, that’s what’s wrong with Twitter and other social media. It’s more about establishing a “presence” or “being seen” rather than heard, I mean really heard. True conversations happen when you get rid of the shouters, those who dominate the conversation. That’s a just enough reason for me to unfollow those bombard my timeline with their tweets, and its reason enough to Tweet seldom but with substance. Maybe, then, we can really and truly connect.