3 Twitter “Friends” Gone…

The last 7 days have been illuminating to me. In the second half of last year we kept hearing about all these changes that were coming to Twitter. It’s always been and, kind of even now, is still my favorite social media platform. So I figured that things could change but none of those things were going to change me, or change on me if you prefer. Man, was I wrong.


The first thing I ended up having to change was TweetDeck. I’ve extolled the virtues of TweetDeck for years and thought it was the easiest and most customizable platform for accessing Twitter. At some point near the end of the year it started going a little wonky; yes, that’s my technical term. It would hang up here and there on both my main computer and my laptop.

Turns out Twitter, which had bought the company last year, had decided they were going to change the entire platform around. They had started trying to move everyone to a browser version but then decided to allow a standalone version as well. I had heard nothing but bad things about it so I figured I would just continue running the old program; what could they do?

Turns out they could actually just stop it by changing how Twitter worked. I decided I didn’t want to wait until the last minute so I downloaded the new program to the laptop first to test it. It’s not so bad; not as easy to use overall as the original program, and you can’t change colors or do some of the things you could do before but it’s doable. Why they took away the ability to hit Enter & have your message go is puzzling but they’ve set up some shortcuts you can use to get it done. It’s taking some getting used to after almost a week but I’ll get there.

The next surprise was something else I talked about here called Friend or Follow. This allowed you to run a process on their website to see who you might be following that was no longer following you. That way, you could decide if you still wanted to follow those people. It’s still around but now you have to become a member, and it says some other things have changed as well. It actually might be good but right now I’m not in the mood to have to sign up for anything new. I’m probably going to have to get over that one of these days because everything’s changing isn’t it?

Then last night the final straw came when I tried to access something else I’ve talked about over the years, Twit Cleaner. What this process did was go through everyone you were following on Twitter and rate them and how they performed on the site. In other words, were they even participating, were they just sending out links all day long, were they using certain platforms to send everything out, were they blathering all day, etc. Then you could select which people you didn’t want to follow anymore and over the course of an hour or so, depending on how many people you were following, it would remove those folks; plain and simple.

Alas, I guess this last Twitter change was too much for the creator, especially since he wasn’t making any money off the thing, thus he decided to shut the entire thing down instead of spending an inordinate amount of time trying to figure out all the changes and recode the entire thing. And he stated that he’d had to do it previously; wow. You never know the dedication that someone else puts into something you get for free sometimes, and most of us don’t know the behind the scenes stuff for much of what we use. In leaving though, he left us with these words, which are prophetic:

Perhaps the key thing?
Never play football when someone else owns the field.

So obvious in hindsight.

Think about that one for a minute because it’s deep, deeper than you might imagine. Remember the question I asked last week on is social media giving you everything you need? It’s been an almost unanimous “no”, yet when you think about it, none of it belongs to us. We didn’t create it, we don’t own it, and we don’t pay for it, and even if we did pay for it nothing says we’d still get everything we wanted because, as with everything else, unless we can code it we never quite get everything we want from anything; that’s deep also.

Sigh… I’m lamenting all these changes to Twitter and yet I have to acknowledge that other social media platforms are changing as well.

Its not really a free country...
Creative Commons License Chad McDonald via Compfight

If you’re on Google Plus you’ve noticed that the image you can use has increased in size, to the point where your image can be as big as what we’ve always called “the fold” for websites.

YouTube is changing as well, going to something called OneChannel, where not only will your background look different but you can put up a much larger profile image there as well (Google owns both, as you know).

The final thing is that Facebook is also changing things again, first to the one column format and soon, since I’ve heard a few folks already have it, its interface will look like, at least to me, what Google Plus’ interface looks like, with much bigger images showing in your space and fewer “business/fan” page insights showing up unless you’ve proven you want them; sigh again… As speculated on Hot Blog Tips Facebook could be moving towards a paid model for business/fan pages even moreso than they’re pushing now. If that actually does happen I’ll abandon my page fully; it’s not something I often think about doing for anything but I will.

As Bob Dylan said, “the times, they are ‘a changin’“.

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14 comments on “3 Twitter “Friends” Gone…

    • First Jacko, you get the one time pass as a regular contributor; no keywords in names along with that symbol because those comments will now go directly to spam, as you probably saw this one head there, and I’m not pulling them out any longer; didn’t you comment on the previous post where I mentioned that?

      Second, I don’t know that anyone is looking at all the people they’re following individually and deciding to stop following someone. I have around 900 people and that’s considered low, and I can’t imagine finding the time to start looking through some of those folks to see if they’re engaging or not at this point. I might pick one off here and there, but all of these tools that helped me enjoy Twitter better have changed or left. Big sigh from me.

  • Mitch, my head has been spinning. And Triberr making changes. Follow Friday app gone – Social Bro bought them. Probably have to pay for the service now. So many changes. The only thing we have control over is our blogs. They must be the base or hub of our entire social platform. And I’m sure there is another big social platform developing out there. It can be quite overwhelming.

    • Lisa, there are so many changes all happening at the same time that it’s got to be throwing a lot of people for a loop. For me I had to deal with Twitter but I know some of the other platforms I’m on will be changing soon as well. I’m in a state as well but there’s nothing we can do about it.

  • I wrote about TweetDeck remember Mitch and mine locked up all the time. It still does but I’ve learned how to get around all of that. I still love the older version so much better.

    I agree and that’s something I’m always telling people. We gripe a LOT about some of these social sites but they’re free for us to use and we aren’t putting in the work to make them work. I can’t even imagine what it must take to run one of these sites and here we are constantly griping instead of appreciate the fact that we’re free to use them.

    It’s their own fault though cause they’ve spoiled us rotten you know. I hate that these programs continue to change but that’s just part of life I guess. Moving on, right!

    Sorry to see some go while some of the other changes I think will be welcomed. I’m still holding my breath on those.

    Adrienne recently posted…How To Start Living With Purpose TodayMy Profile

    • I do remember that Adrienne and look at what’s happening. Our technology keeps changing, even when we don’t see that there’s any problems with it, and I guess that’s just how it goes. I’m learning how t play along with the new version, even though it’s still lacking in some ways but I’m not sure how everything else is going to go outside of Twitter. At least we have to be happy that we have these social media platforms, right?

  • That comes as no surprise to me whatsoever Mitch; countless times I’ve been happily running a program or GUI of a web service then they suddenly decide to alter the whole thing for no obvious reason whatsoever. Many a time the new “updated” version has a been horror. Likewise with software, I had Quicken on my old XP pc, bought a new windows 7 pc, and Quicken wouldnt work on it. Software devs said I would have to buy the new Quicken, which I have no intention of learning all over again. So I am stuck with keeping my old XP pc running.

    • Richard, I liked XP myself, but truthfully the PC I had put together never worked all that well so I didn’t mind eventually getting to Win 7. The thing is I’d have stayed with the original TweetDeck if it hasn’t started to shut down. The other two… well, I might end up signing up for one but the other’s gone; sigh…

  • Rishabh Misra says:

    Great post so knowledgeable. Few days i make account in TweetDeck and attach my twitter account. TweetDeck really cinch my work to increase my followers.
    Thank you to sharing me this post to enhance information about tweetDeck.

  • Could not agree more. Many third party twitter apps/services have stopped or depreciated over time. The Google+ thingy you mentioned is absolutely correct. The images have gone to a HUGE level. The whole idea of social media is changing, more focus is on images, broader texts, memes, etc. Google+ allowing you to create memes like text while posting an image is an example. May be the concentration is shifted toward supporting the brand’s presence on these media. More & more branding & advertising options are there to reach more audience.
    Bhaskar Bharti recently posted…20 Funniest Social Media Cartoons to make you LOLMy Profile

    • Thanks Bhaskar. The strange thing is that people notice the images and still seem to miss out on the content. I’m not sure how that helps anyone but these sites don’t care as much about that as they do about engagement in general. Still, losing my apps and different programs and processes here and there is depressing.


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