Dear Twitter: It’s Not the End

By: Jordynn Barnes

Just over 10 years ago, a little blue bird flew into our lives. His name: Twitter. His motive: Giving users a way to express themselves in 140 characters or less. Or in my case, connect to the celebrities I was digging at the time—which may or may not have been the latest emo band, but that’ll be our secret.

I still remember my first tweet like it was yesterday. I believe it went something like this: “I’m new to this Twitter thing.” It was very similar to everyone’s first tweet.

Now, more often than not, people are questioning if Twitter will be around in the next two years. With the death of Vine and Twitter’s recent layoffs in the headlines, it’s easy to believe that the platform is just going to throw in the towel. However, just like in sports, it’s when you feel like you’re about to give up that you receive the much-needed pep talk.

So Twitter, this is my pep talk to you.

Dear Twitter:

Things are tough right now, huh? People just continue to kick you while you’re down, try to tell you to reconsider why you joined the Internet. Shut them out, they’re not worth it. So you spent $30 million on a service that you thought was going to help differentiate you from others. It’s okay, you didn’t see Instagram coming. Even the best plans sometimes fall, hard.

Do you know what you need to do right now? Stand up and don’t give up. Be yourself, in a world where all social channels are trying to be alike. Look at Instagram, trying to be like Snapchat with their Stories feature. You don’t need Twitter Moments to be cool. Keep your character count at 140 and be you. Embrace the good things you have going.

Yeah, you’re no longer the king of connecting users to the lives of celebrities. And yes, I can now see what Khloe Kardashian is eating for breakfast on Snapchat. But that doesn’t mean you’re not worth it! You are the OG of live social networks. Where else would we turn for customer service issues that deserve an immediate response? How else would I have been retweeted by the Discovery Channel during Shark Week and have my tweet displayed on TV? We need you.

You want to be better? Can we think about changing your algorithm? I appreciate the effort in giving me the content you think I want to see first, but I really just want reverse chronological order back. Also, can you begin to do what you said you’re going to do? Remember when you said we wouldn’t have to put a period in front of a handle if it was starting a sentence? Can we work on that? Embrace your influencer network and expand Niche. Do I really need to say how great it is to have the guesswork taken out of social influencer research?

Take a look at the positives. For example, an image doesn’t count against my character count anymore. The world we now live in! I feel like I have so much more space to document my thoughts! And those custom hashtag emojis – brilliant. I can now live tweet #SharkWeek and not worry about hunting down an emoji. Or, as in recent days, tweet about my discomfort during The Walking Dead season premiere and see Negan’s bat displayed in my tweet.

Long story short, embrace your successes and not your failures. Be different. Be bold. Fly high little bird, you still have big things ahead of you. It is not the end.


P.S. It’s not that Disney said, “No.” They’re just not that into you right now. Give it time. They’ll come around.