One Flew The Twitter Nest « @lissnup

One Flew The Twitter Nest

Not an exhaustive list of complaints, but these are a few of the reasons I decided to change the way I use social media, by changing my base from Twitter to WordPress.

  • My blog is indexed by search engines. My tweets are not. In fact, on some external applications that require a Twitter name to run a search via the Twitter API, my user name returns “User does not exist”.
  • I can export an entire archive of my blog posts, attachments & comments. I can’t export my tweets, even thought we were told in April 2010 that they would be in the US National Archive (what happened there?), and who knows what level of access the CIA has?
  • I can’t access the entire history of my “Twitter pics” on photobucket, despite being a registered user. The terms of service (TOS) say that they can be removed at any time – and I have seen images “disappear”. Meanwhile, under TwitPic‘s TOS I surrender all my rights to my images to TwitPic (not to the public domain). On WordPress my images are mine and they stay mine.
  • Direct Messages (DMs) are not guaranteed to remain private, since it has come to light that Twitter will hand them over to 3rd parties under court order; and not reliable for important communication because there is no mechanism apart from email alerts to inform you about new private messages. DMs often fail to update, fail to load, and the number of Direct Messages visible online is limited. Also, sent messages are not available to save or download within Twitter, unlike received messages which can be received via email (but without guarantees you’ll get them all). So you end up with one half of a conversation, or searching around for a third party application to extract your own DMs, but in doing that you have to grant access to your private messages to a 3rd party! Email or secure chat are far superior tools for conversations.
  • Replies on Twitter are a freaking mess. There is minimal threading restricted to just a few posts. Comment threads on a blog or threaded emails are a much better alternative.
  • Twitter is not well suited to people who want to post frequent updates, and this is especially true when they follow other users with similar update volumes. The timeline for users like myself is an unmanageable cacophony of over 1000 tweets an hour, and the restrictions on the number of posts that can be viewed, combined with the ongoing and unpredictable issue where some updates fail to load, makes it impossible to rely on being able to see all your friend’s updates, or of your own updates being seen.
  • WordPress does not enforce random censorship of your posts without any warning. Twitter users have been complaining of apparent but usually unprovable censorship on their posts, usually linked to certain key words or hashtags, for over two years.
  • WordPress allows long posts without having to resort to a different application to create them, and supports almost unlimited tags as well as categories. Twitter will limit the number of links allowed on a tweet, and will consider you in violation of TOS if you frequently use “too many” tags or mention people “too often” if they don’t follow you.
  • WordPress lets you choose if people can subscribe to your blog, tells you when that happens, and those subscribers can choose to reveal their identity to you or not. They can unsubscribe any time they like. No one on WordPress makes a fuss about gaining or losing subscribers. WordPress granular Comments options deal with new commenters or potential spam with sensitivity and common sense. Compare that to the follow-follow back-unfollow-block-report options and the insecure-and-creepy moral blackmail tone of “who unfollowed me”, the endless waves of Twitter spam, and the nauseating #TeamFollowBack nonsense.
  • Twitter does not approve of multiple accounts for one user. WordPress offers you almost unlimited blogs. With the free template I am using here, P2, I can allow any WordPress user to post updates to my blog if I wish and we can all be logged in to WordPress at the same time.
  • The P2 template I’m using here offers the option of creating a short status update or a regular post. Clearly, the demise of TweetDeck’s longer post management has been a golden opportunity for WordPress.
  • Finally (for now) Twitter is unresponsive to complaints or criticisms and has abandoned the quality of interaction that was there at the very start. The millions of users, excluding the vast majority that are spam accounts, do not feel like part of a community where their opinions or feedback are solicited, welcomed and responded to. There is no consultative process for Twitter development. Each change comes as a complete surprise. The inevitable bugs and service failures that accompany each change now fails to surprise anyone. WordPress commitment to community engagement is the polar opposite of Twitter.

There you go. Those are my main reasons for moving to WordPress.

What does that mean for anyone who follows me on Twitter?
If I am following you back, you might not get a reply to your DM. You should email me: mail.lissnup[at]gmail[dot]com instead.
Whether I am following you or not, you will get a response to comments on the blog here far faster than to a reply or mention on Twitter.
Everything I post here will be sent to my Twitter account, so you’ll still see my posts on Twitter and can read them in their entirety here. Forever. Almost: eventually they’ll need to be archived for the sake of everyone’s  sanity.
I will be doing far fewer manual re-tweets or Twitter button re-tweets.
I will still read some of the updates you post to Twitter, using a search result page that I have created specifically for that purpose.

More discussion and input about this here and the thinking behind the WordPress team themselves using this concept since 2009, here

Questions or comments? Use the comments section here!