Social Media Twilight Years

Do you want a good long-ish read? This great piece from The Atlantic was right up my alley. The end of social media? Imagine that. Sure, this has been said before, and I think that’s because the life of social media has been dwindling for years. We’ve seen more signs of it in recent months with Facebook earnings dropping and the company pivoting away from the social app towards the metaverse. And lately, we’ve witnessed Twitter being run into the ground in quick fashion.

If social media has aged into its twilight years, it looks now to be in hospice. It’s condition is terminal; there’s little time left.

“It’s over. Facebook is in decline, Twitter in chaos. Mark Zuckerberg’s empire has lost hundreds of billions of dollars in value and laid off 11,000 people, with its ad business in peril and its metaverse fantasy in irons. Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter has caused advertisers to pull spending and power users to shun the platform (or at least to tweet a lot about doing so). It’s never felt more plausible that the age of social media might end—and soon.”Ian Bogost

It’s one thing to predict the demise of social networking as we know it. It’s another thing, though, to step back and realize we may very well be witnessing social media in the throes of death. It’s not going down without a fight, but it’s definitely down. Even regular users of Facebook wouldn’t argue that the service isn’t what it once was.

As long as we still have the good ol’ internet, we still have social networking despite lacking social media proper. Along this line, it’s interesting to see how many people have left Twitter lately and joined Mastodon and refer to it as old-school networking due to its federated or decentralized setup.

We don’t need Twitter or Facebook. Social Media was cool at first, but it devolved. After causing upheaval, it is being upheaved. Despite some benefits, I still think social media, overall, isn’t worth it.

A telling anecdote: in times past, when I’ve quit Facebook, I always eventually felt pressure or draw to return with a new account; friends and family can be hard to resist. But since I logged off Facebook almost eight months ago, I have not logged back in a single time. I’ve only felt a possible reason to maybe log in once, just recently and very briefly.

I did not log in. Instead, I met an acquaintance face to face. How’s that for social?

Do you think we are truly seeing the age of social media ending?