I used to think Twitter was tripe…

An overrated load of slob-lock (Fry and Laurie fans will know what I mean) where people tell the world random guff about their daily lives. I thought it was not a patch on Facebook and even the number of characters per tweet were too small in my opinion. My brother would endlessly tell me how addictive and amazing Twitter was in the hope that I would join but I refused to follow the masses, mainly because I had an old-school (some might say normal) mobile phone.

Then one day, I got a Smartphone (curse you blasted Smartphone! This is all your fault!!), downloaded the Twitter app and typed my first tweet. Some 700 tweets later (how did that happen?) I’ve turned into a bit of an addict. Some comments that I’ve read on there have bordered on comic genius, while others have staggered me in how dumb and offensive people can be. Plus I’m amazed at how quickly I can discover info or breaking news on Twitter (that said I’ve come across a couple of premature death tweets which unnerve me somewhat).

But the one thing about Twitter is the way it eats up my time. I might decide to pop on there to read some random tweets and the next thing I know, I’ve been scrolling through my timeline for over half-an-hour. And it’s not as if I have nothing to do! Checking to see what people have written first thing in the morning during the twelve or so hours that I’ve been hibernating has turned into a bad habit.

I have become one of those people I hate- the ones who go ‘hmmmmmmm’ while looking at their phone screen as their relative/friend/other half talks to them. When I found myself scrolling through my timeline instead of watching the Paralympic Closing Ceremony and enjoying the moment, that’s when I knew had to give it up.

Yes, I’m gonna go cold turkey from Twitter for a week, maybe two, because reading and re-tweeting other people’s tweets (most of them people I DON’T KNOW) is having an effect on me. Don’t worry, I’ve not become unhinged but multi-tasking a conversation with my loved ones while checking updates can turn me into a monotonous moose. Being a nosey parker causes me to check what everyone else is saying, no matter how irrelevant it is. And to massage my ego, I also end up checking to see if anyone has re-tweeted my wonderfully witty comments. But I’m not Rihanna- I don’t have a shedload of followers, which suits me just fine.

Pre-Twitter/Facebook, I could go days without worrying what others were doing. If I wanted to know, I would text them and even that was a rarity. Things were not as instantaneous as they are now. Part of me thinks that was a good thing but then having knowledge at your fingertips and being able to get- or keep -in touch with someone even quicker than before is also great. But the trouble with social media is our inner gossip wants to sniff out as much information as possible and know what’s happening in the world right now and do not want to miss out.

So, as previously mentioned, I’m going to try and survive without it for a while and see what happens. I might explode at the frustration of it all. I might go two weeks without thinking about it (unlikely). I’m not going to delete my Twitter app because that would be ridiculous. I can resist temptation even if it’s still there. And don’t ask me to stop using Facebook at the same time… what a preposterous idea.

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