There are definitely some positive aspects to using social networks such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. However, there can also be some negativities in doing so. One of the downsides is that there can be individuals whom purposely misconstrue what you are saying. Sometimes this is deliberately done on their part because they feel as though instigating fights is a good way of handling things or as a means to push their agendas onto others. Other times this is due to the constraints of a service. Somebody purposely misconstrued what I said due to the brevity of items on twitter. Hence, I decided that I would stop using Twitter for a while. Ultimately it ended up being for about a week. If any of my Twitter followers are reading this, they may end up going back and checking to see if I actually did stop using Twitter for a week. I can tell you that I did.
During this time I did not open up my preferred Twitter application, Tweetbot, on any of my iOS devices nor my Mac. When I made the decision to stop using Twitter, I turned off all notifications for Tweetbot and also disabled all of the SMS notifications that I had enabled on the Twitter website.
It was an interesting experiment to do. It wasn’t a scientific one by any means, but merely a personal one. There were a couple of downsides; I missed wishing somebody a happy birthday during the week. Another downside, and the biggest one, was that I felt a bit out of touch because Twitter is my primary news source. It is where breaking news occurs, and while I did know about all of the big stories through my podcasts, including the locating of the tail section of the Air Asia flight 8501, as well as the attacks in Paris, I missed out on the smaller stories. Moreover, knowing about the stories is not the same as being able to participate, if not in real time, at least within a reasonable amount of time, with others.
One of the tangential reasons that I opted to stop using Twitter was that I had noticed that I was been paying as much attention to the shows I was watching. This was because I was paying more attention to Twitter than the show. Without being on Twitter, I did notice that I did pay more attention to the shows I was watching. For some shows that I have seen multiple times, it would not be an issue, yet, for other shows it can be problematic.
When I decided to get back on Twitter, I decided to check if anybody had mentioned me, direct messaged, or anything else; and they had not. I am Not sure whether to think that I am inconsequential or if it is because everybody is following so many people that they do not notice when one person does not post for a while. When using Tweetbot on my Mac, I have one Twitter list of people that I want to see everything they post, so I would most likely notice when anybody on that list does not post for a while.
The hardest aspect to it was for not checking was the first couple of days, since checking Twitter had become a habit after being on Twitter for almost 8 years. As the week progress it did become easier to handle. As of right now, I am not using nearly as much as I was before. And that is not necessarily a bad thing. Overall, I think it can be helpful for everybody to take a step back, from whatever it is they feel as though they may be doing too much, every once in a while just to allow them to re-evaluate what they are doing and see if it is still completely necessary, and if they still enjoy the activity.