Someone, not me, years ago–when people were kind-of moving from FaceBook to Twitter–quipped: ‘FaceBook is the people you went to High School with, Twitter is the people that you wish you went to High School with.’ In the earlier days, that really nailed it.
Then the brands came. Then the ads. And the algorithmic timeline. Everything got serious. That feeling of just hanging out with a group of people disappeared. It wasn’t necessarily bad, just not the thing it was. I think a lot of people have felt this, commenting that after spending time on Twitter, they don’t feel good afterwards.
I’m treating my move to Mastodon as a reset. I started using Twitter in 2007. It turns out that 15 years later, the group of people that “I wish I went to High School with” is a little different. Close! But not exactly the same.