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  • Writer's pictureMike Douglas

Bye Shouty Twitter?

What a few weeks it's been. In the last two to three weeks I’ve gradually decreased my time and interest in social media, particularly Twitter (just because that is were I spend most of my online time).

In the last week or two I have found social media, but again more so Twitter, has become a place that's basically a ’news’ show.‬ ‪It’s often one way conversation, which flips on a dime based on popularity, or the story of the moment.

This person is 100% bad, this person is 100% good, and a rhetoric of extremes and 'black and white thinking'. Personally, I assure you, I live in a world with a lot or shades of grey; rarely is there a clear obvious simple 'good' answer or reaction to have. Let alone an honest one of not knowing. ‬

‪There seems to be a lack of compassion or understanding for anyone that thinks differently, even if they are open to learning‬. Again there is this idea of social media being a news site, rather than being 'social' or 'networking'.

Thinking differently is how we learn and evolve; through discussion and understanding, and acknowledging in some cases our own ignorance.

In the last few weeks I have found social media has no longer been a place to share, discover and learn, educate yourself. ‪It’s filled with shouting the only voice is the loudest, proclaiming "No, do it this way, do it my way!‬"

‪Gone are the awesome conversations involving: “I didn’t know that”, “thank you for sharing”, “that’s interesting I wouldn’t have thought of it like that”‬, "wow, I would never have know/ thought that". The learning has gone, the openness has gone.

‪It’s a personal thing I guess. But I don’t have expectations of others (mainly through a lack of trust), so my only expectations are of myself. ‪

I’ve definitely made mistakes in the past and probably will do in the future. But I’m ready to learn and to be educated and to share my own insights too. ‬

There are so many things we can learn about and discuss: mental health, poverty, race inequalities, gender stereotyping and the general lack of compassion we sometimes show.

For now I have changed how I am using social media, though that change has mainly been using it less.

I also think there is a common misunderstand of social media 'communities'. For me it's about the community you create around yourself. There isn't necessarily a 'the community'.

So, I have unfollowed a few people and muted a few more, I have also found a few people that are passionate about things I don't know as much about, but want to know more (which has previously been a great way to refresh my community online).

It is this thought process that has led me to some interesting conversations or new knowledge in the past; such as moon cups, stomas, infertility, homelessness, gender and sexuality struggles during puberty and many more topics/ subjects.

I hope/ know social media (and twitter) will be a resource I use more again in the future. But for now I am going to limit my time and my investment in social media. Plus, I need to limit the amount of times I am exposed to the words "Daily Briefing" and "World Beating System", the UK is a difficult confusing and often misleading place right now.


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