So long, Twitter

I joined Twitter in early 2009, and, for most of the over 13 years, enjoyed it tremendously. While I never had a huge follower base (a couple of hundreds at most), it was my preferred social network.

And today, I am leaving. For good. There is really not much for me to add to this excellent piece of Nilay Patel at the Verge. Elon Musk is going to run this company to the ground, and destroy the social network in the process. He already started to lay off half its staff and introduced questionable feature plans with comical deadlines, all while spreading right-wing conspiracy theories. Regardless whether or not he will be successful making Twitter profitable enough to withstand the financial pressure of his own acquisition, and somehow keep Twitter from becoming a right-wing hellhole, I do not want to be a part of this. It can only go downhill for Twitter from here on out.

Last week, I set up my own Mastodon instance. It has one user–me–and it is my window into the Fediverse. This is not the first time I am using Mastodon, I have been on and off the service (on for a few years, but I never had an incentive to stay there permanently; Twitter always had a larger pulling force. For me, it is different this time. And judging from my Mastodon timeline, I am not alone.

Of course it remains to be seen if Mastodon will be a successful replacement for Twitter–that really depends on whether or not all the users that recently “migrated” from Twitter will stay and be active there–but even if it is not, I am no longer subject to the mood swings of a billionaire wanna-be genius.