Twitter 14th Anniversary

How about I celebrate with a blog post instead. 👍

Twitter notified me today that it was my 14th Anniversary on Twitter. I signed up on Wed Dec 20 21:25:24 +0000 2006, claiming user number #82,903. This was before the big unveiling at SXSW in 2007. My very first tweet (although they weren’t called tweets then), sent shortly after setting up the account…

On a conference call!

I love that. 😂 You can’t see that on Twitter because I use TweetDeleter these days to delete all of my tweets after 60 days, and I purged all 8,000+ tweets from my profile. I grabbed a complete archive of my Tweets before doing that though so I can still see them. That first tweet was the 1,443,783rd message on Twitter according to the backup. I’ve had Pinboard’s Twitter archiving turned on since Aug 25 2008 so it has most everything archived as well.

When Twitter first launched it was very silly. Most early users didn’t understand what it was useful for. I remember giving a presentation to a bunch of news people showing them how Twitter could be used as another channel to distribute news. That same silly product now has a protocol to hand over the Twitter account between one President to the next.

Some thoughts on 14 years of Twitter:

  • Twitter used to be a lot more fun. I don’t remember there be so much hate and anger on the platform for the first several years.
  • Twitter is still a great way to connect with people around the world that have information or perspective you are interested in.
  • Twitter regularly feels to me like a breakout product stuck in a company that can’t figure it out. They should be fighting the bots and trolls more.
  • Twitter is a weird social network because every user of Twitter has a different experience based on the people they follow.
  • Avoid Twitter Trends like the plague. Don’t use Twitter to get your news.
  • Twitter has gotten much more complicated. Threads are the newest thing adding complications.
  • It is amazing how many of Twitters product features originated with conventions that their users adopted and then they productized.
  • Twitter has a small number of incredibly passionate, probably addicted, users.
  • I’ve left every other social network but I haven’t left Twitter (wait, I guess LinkedIn is also a social network now). I have deleted my archive, and I no longer follow anyone and instead use Feedbin to follow accounts. i try to limit the amount my social graph is visible. But I still find value in Twitter.

I haven’t authored any content on Twitter for over three years now. I write everything on and then it cross-posts that to Twitter. I still see a lot of engagement on Twitter though and I do keep connected to people with it.

My hope for Twitter is that it finds it’s footing, it sheds the hate, rid the bots which would easiest by moving to a paid model. I keep thinking a Twitter where every user pays $5/mo or $50/year would be amazing. Maybe ditch the likes too, and try to get rid of the popularity contest.