Twitter is dead, but what about me?


Twitter is dead. If we didn’t know it for sure before, the last few weeks have confirmed it. It’s a shambles. It’s glitchy, full of ads, and becoming progressively more unusable. Elon tried changing the entire thing to “X”, like a teenager trying to rebrand because nobody at his new school knows he’s a loser yet, but with every new decision the app is hemorrhaging advertisers and users.

Twitter is deserted and dusty, with jackals (blue tick buyers) fighting over its stripped bare carcass. It is like the wild wild west, except in this case the west is run by egomaniacal nerds who were given too much power because their families have emeralds and they make computers go. They were never meant to have this kind of social status, and this much power.

Twitter’s downfall is bad news for me – and people like me.Credit: Janet Briggs

I’ve seen people say that Twitter dying is overall a positive thing for society. That is hard to argue with, especially now that it sucks so bad. There is little positive left on the site. Engagement has dropped, fun has been sucked out, racists and transphobes are thriving. The end of Twitter is good for society, when you look at it like that… but what about ME? The ways in which it is bad for me in particular are both personal and professional.

I have been on Twitter for an embarrassingly long time. I have been on Twitter through huge changes in my life, through deaths, job losses, job gains, moves interstate, moves overseas, first dates, last dates, and first dates that were also last dates. I have met pretty much all of my best friends through Twitter. I met my girlfriend on Twitter. I have built a community there, amongst the freaks and weirdos. I am old now and have enough friends, but I think in this current global landscape, people are finding it even harder to make connections. Twitter has always had a huge capacity to help with that.

Twitter does hold the worst of people, but it also has some of the very best, all swimming around in a terrible stew. It will undoubtedly be a loss for many on a personal level, and will make lots of people’s lives lonelier. But on the other hand, if lots of terrible trolls are forced offline, they will hopefully have time to take up another hobby, perhaps badminton or going to live in the sewers.

Twitter is also the reason I have a career. I am a fat lesbian who grew up in regional Queensland in a working-class family that had zero connection to the arts or any creative industry whatsoever. I had written things for myself since I was a kid, and had hopes of being a writer, but had zero knowledge about how I would even begin to make that happen.

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Then, Twitter came along. I made jokes, I wrote rants about things, I got some followers. One of them, Jane Gilmore (direct all your hate mail about me to her), saw one of my rants about lesbians on TV, and asked me to turn it into an article for her publication. It went well, and I started writing regularly.

My now good friend James Colley saw my tweets and my funny writing, and asked me to write for SBS’s The Backburner, my first comedy gig. That’s where everything started to kick off. My writing and jokes got me followers, my followers and attention got me opportunities, and so on and so forth. I have a career in comedy, in writing, in TV. It has had ups and downs, and I’m mostly just scraping by, but I’m able to say my job is being a writer. It’s what I dreamed of, and I only achieved it because of Twitter.



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