X (formerly Twitter) Discussion

I didn’t use Twitter before all this started and still don’t now.

So if they’re now named posts, does the same apply? You can’t view posts unless you’re registered and logged in?

If you have the weblink for a post you get the post.

Otherwise I suspect you’d be out of luck (or in luck depending on your point of view).

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I can still see them without having an account. I think there’s some AB testing going on.

I’m pretty sure just deleting your account deletes everything from the public website. Then supposedly is wiped permanently after 30 days but I’ve never put in a request to check to even think about exercising my right to be forgotten.

But that’s my mantra anyway. If a community gets to a point where you no longer feel safe or welcome, then they lose their right to benefit from the inclusion and context of your contributions. When I leave, I always go nuclear scorched earth for that reason.

I cant see posts either. I thought Elon made the change quite a long time ago to lock it down


It was supposed to be temporary though

Was it the Great Hack by any chance? It’s about Cambridge Analytica.

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It still uses the Twitter.com domain, so… you [Elon Musk] first?

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I can’t see how this could be bad for X, at all. Oh wait.


So I’m a research scientist and Twitter is a major avenue for people to promote themselves and their work. As such it’s been surprising to see how entrenched people are. Even with a lot of them decrying Elon’s stance. It’ll be b interesting to see if being made to pay for it will change people’s stance.

Personally I’ve noticed I use it a lot less. But this has also been proportional to me being a lot less “current” with new papers and directions my field is moving…

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No-one I know is willing to pay. Blue Sky invite codes are flying around all over the place. And my timeline is getting quieter and quieter - I can not look for 12 hours and when I do, I can scroll back to where I left off without having to ‘see more tweets’.

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The only time I find myself on Twitter these days is when someone posts a tweet on here, so I’m not really bothered.

Saddened for what it once was, and that vision, which Tim Cook seems to still believe in. Maybe they should stop ceding control to morally depraved companies and actually really try at the social town square concept.

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My usage of Twitter is now simply reading the odd thing people send me, down from tens of thousands of posts a year in my hayday and being part of their little analysis communities.

I even ended up with the staff new joiner kit as a gift at one point. It’s a bit sad to see where it’s ended up.

Nowadays I’m on the Fediverse and BlueSky, and albeit neither is amazing, both are less mentally draining than Twitter in recent years.


Much as people like to complain about it, most data suggests there hasn’t been the drop in usage that everyone expected. The rate of development releases actually seems to be faster now than it was before the Musk takeover despite only having a quarter of the staff. Community notes seems to be working better as well. When it comes to politics, I disagree with Musk on almost everything, but as a businessman, he knows what he’s doing.


In the case of Twitter I feel like the jury is still out on that one. User numbers have not tanked but that’s not exactly a success measure. Revenue for this year is said to be £3bn, down from £5bn in 2021. It was profitable in the past; it almost certainly is loss making this year.

But also suspect that overall he knows what he’s doing. Lots of the strongest critics were convinced the platform would just stop working soon after he fired everyone - it didn’t though.

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And yet it still made a loss of a couple hundred million, as it did in the previous 2 years (although obviously the pandemic can’t have helped with that).

In the two years it did make a profit over the past decade or so, there was a healthy margin - so the question is whether his cost cutting has outpaced the ad slowdown. You’re probably right that there will be a loss this year, but I’d be surprised if it’s anywhere near the billion dollar plus losses of previous year. I don’t think he’s thinking particularly short term anyway.

I found out today that one of the reason numbers haven’t tanked is because X, the app formerly known as Twitter, counts them differently now. They used to count and report based on a minimum level of activity - which makes sense because if you’re trying to sell ad space you want to demonstrate people are actually looking - but now they report double the number because they’re counting all users, not just the active ones.

I strongly suspect he hasn’t a clue what he’s doing. He’s done everything wrong with advertisers when someone who knew would’ve done everything possible to protect that revenue rather than driving them away. It had been suggested that the reason he keeps getting things badly wrong is because he thinks he’s bought a tech company, when it was actually a people company.

Also, the platform platform literally has stopped working in one way or other multiple times now. The biggest example is probably when everyone got rate limited and couldn’t read anything. The most recent example would be the loss of most photos prior to 2014 (I think). Quote tweets have been semi-broken for months - the quoted tweet can’t be displayed so you have to click through to read it. The whole thing still feels like it’s held together by string.

ETA: trying to find source I saw re: user numbers. Haven’t found yet, but I did find this apparently independent analysis of Twitter’s users and traffic

ETA2: found a different example of numbers being misrepresented


Is X really going to go behind a paywall, or is this the same as Michael O’Leary saying they’re planning standing flights to get a bit of free advertising?

I think it’s him saying something with a nudge and a wink and then people run with it, and he’s happy with that.

Charging everyone would solve his bots problem. But it would also solve the need for him to pay for as much data storage/bandwidth as he does as he’d have dramatically less people to serve.

I use Twitter all the time, I’ve got a tab open now and I’ll look at it 100 times today. If the worst came to the worst, I probably would pay a small fee to keep it. But, I’d need/want everything that it currently has to stay the same, to keep the same people I follow, the same things I want to read about, the breaking news, the interesting stories etc etc, to remain exactly as they are, and all of those people are not going to pay too.


I would take any figures such as this provided by a given company with a pinch of salt. But most reliable indicators I’ve seen suggest traffic hasn’t tanked - e.g. SimilarWeb (which uses data from ad blockers and extensions) show it’s generally similar to before the Musk takeover, and even Google trends, which also doesn’t show a severe drop off.

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