Why I Wanted to Leave Twitter and Why I Stayed

Firstly I’d like to thank you for thinking highly of me enough to read this blog, but also to warn you that the reasons why I nearly left twitter may bring this highly-thinking-of-me to a screeching, rubber-burning halt.

Quite simply, I wasn’t feeling like I was giving or recieving much of use and that there were better ways I could do this with my time.

I still feel like that, but thirty seconds after publishing a post, I realised I wanted to tweet it. I wanted to give.

Here’s the cotradiction – giving on twitter feels like taking. And taking feels like giving. It’s an upside down world. But as I said, as long as people are helped, who gives a…

Tweeting an article of your own is seen as “taking”. You’re taking people’s time. It’s percieved as such because the assumption is that you’re only there to get something from people. That’s the concept the twitter-blogosphere works as far as I see it.

Am I wrong? Am I narcisitic? Maybe. I see myself as highly sensitive and I usually trust myself to see somethig for what it is even if others’ don’t.

Taking is seen as giving. When you post a link that you like, you’re inviting people to read it. You think it’s beneficial, to some extent. But more likely, you just want to stay visible and be seen as contributing value. In reality, the article may not be as helpful as that. I’m sorry, but if even if every single link you post on Twitter is helpful, it can’t be that helpful, bceause if I read every single link you posted it’d be a full time job. The result? I read almost none of your links, although I do read all of your tweets. Why? I want to stay conncted with you.

Why? Because somehow, I love you, or love what you do. I just FN dont like the way Twitter works at the moment.

Thanks moominsean for the cool Godzillasaur.


  1. Ali says:

    I just realised the hypocrisy of this – and having a re-tweet button above. Obviously, everyone thinks their stuff is worth sharing. I guess I’m just so overwhelmed.

  2. Deborah Penner says:

    Hey, Ali …

    I totally get your internal dilemma. Everything we put out there could be perceived as giving to get. Sometimes it feels like I’m back in high school secretly wishing to be the most popular, respected one in my particular group … measuring what everyone may or may not be thinking … and you know the funny thing … I can’t know what anyone really thinks and it isn’t my business.

    I stumbled onto your blog quite by accident, really like your style and message and now your stuff is fed to my home page. I’m learning my way around what could be construed as a cyber-jungle.

    Thanks for doing what you do.


  3. Ali says:

    Hi Deborah – nice to meet you.

    It’s really great to connect with people on Twitter and the best thing about it is that I’ve made some really great friends.

    The thing that’s hard to deal with is the low percentage of quality interaction. You have to read through so much to find something you can contribute to, to support those people you want to. It all feels like too much work for me! I’m not sure what to do about it… I really don’t like to complain without a solution though, so I regret publishing this post a little. Sometimes I just feel good about shining light on those unpleasant but nagging feelings, because I know others must be experiencing them too – and maybe if we talk about it we can find something better. I’m sure before too long, the way people use twitter will change, or a new Twitter will emerge.

    RE highschool feelings – yes.. it can get like that. Because I think when we interact with the comunity on twitter, we’re also interacting at least partly with our imagination! In that way I actually think Twitter’s a good teacher – how we feel about it largely reflects out state of mind.

    But there’s still something that’s bugging me! (ask my wife about it – there always is).

    Welcome to my blog! Glad to be on your homepage!

  4. Majeeda says:

    Lol Ali.

    You mentioned that it’s most likely some people just want to stay visible…well, that might be true for some. But it’s not a blanket truth. As you mentioned, some people genuinely want to stay connected because they actually like people and like what they are doing.

    They (we) may have their blogs to promote as well, but just because someone has something to promote does not mean they are not sincere. Sometimes I get a jaded when I see things about becoming a better blogger etc etc being re-tweeted because it reminds me of this side of the world…the side which is about marketing and a part of me really doesn’t like it…

    I could be wrong, but for me, as well as some others, it’s about sharing. There is nothing essentially wrong with that.

    Maybe you just got overloaded? I can relate to that because sometimes I feel overwhelmed when I log on because there are sooo many links (sometimes I just don’t go there and avoid the confusion).

    But to post a link is just a way to share; your ideas, your life, the things which interest you. It doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone has to click on them or that they are interesting to everyone. (Over-sharing is a bit annoying though).

    Don’t forget that each one of us has a variety of people listed as followers or friends on there. If I post about children, Islam or environment there are going to be people I know on twitter that aren’t interested, but I don’t see that as a reason not to post them.

    Wow, I didn’t realise I would have so much to say about twitter!! I never even wanted to join originally, I just felt I had to…but now I appreciate it for what it is. Glad you didn’t leave. :)

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Responses & Tweets

  1. Ali Dark says:

    [confessional:] Why I Wanted to Leave Twitter and Why I Stayed http://bit.ly/98f8N7

  2. Sandra Lee says:

    RT @alidark3000 [confessional:] Why I Wanted to Leave Twitter and Why I Stayed http://bit.ly/98f8N7

  3. Bill Gerlach says:

    RT @AliDark3000: Why I Wanted to Leave Twitter and Why I Stayed http://bit.ly/98f8N7 <– Meditating on the social media fix…