social media

Reflections on the seventh birthday of Twitter

Twitter is seven years old, you might have learned recently.

Twitter is seven years old, you might have learned recently.

That great pillar of internet trolldom and BS-mongering, Twitter has brought us some great scandals, a few fake deaths of celebrities who I really wish had died, and of course almost 60 million fake accounts. I Twitter on Twitter, mostly about politics, sometimes about myself, and usually in a fairly harmless way. Some people use it for important work or alternatively for blatant self-promotion. I decided to ask some famous tweeters what they used it for.

Barack Obama, State President of the American Uniteds of the American US of A:

“Yeah, I use Twitter. I send my Twitter Tweeters pictures of myself and my lovely wife Michelle. People retweet them to feel good about how racially diverse their internet profile is.”

[Retweets are a bit like plagiarism, a bit like knock-knock jokes, and a bit like a way for single women to feel better about their lives, because As long as you still have a dream in your heart, you still have the chance to make it happen” Thanks to @InspowerMinds for that.]

Tom Daley, fish person:

“Haha, I use twitter to send pictures of myself topless haha haaaay twitter, lol #lol #lovemyfans #swimming. I love my fans. Here’s a picture for my fans. My fans retweet me and beg me to follow them because I inspire them but they inspire me to inspire inspiration in national pride and Olympic party inspiration… BUY MY BOOK!!!”

Big Ben, Clock:


George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer and Prince of Darkness:

“Fiscal budget monetary competitive independent Cyprus OBR GDP BBC deficit Labour lib dems deport the poor?”

Nigel Farage, leader of UKIP political party:


Stephen Fry, comedian and Twitter user:

“Good hello, you old horse. Scrumptious old muffin, pip pip Bullingdon Twitter; tinkerty tonk Wotsit flibbertigibbet Champagne string pants Lord Rosebury. I have the honour of being, sir, yours sincerely, Mr S. Fry.”

Glenn Beck, schizophrenic:

“Let me just start by saying God bless the USA, Obamarama kills our freedom. #Romney2012 failed but if you follow me we can create a good honest fascist state based around freedom for everyone except women, gays, liberals and children who are being waterboarded.”

I admit, Twitter isn’t quite as high-thinking as I might have thought when I joined. It is incredibly frivolous and, intellectually, reduces everything to the most absurd of arguments. The people doing the tweeting aren’t interested in anyone but themselves and the people reading the tweets aren’t interested in anything except blindly passing off the knowledge or attempt at humour as the fruit of their own labour.

Twitter is great fun though, and I will continue to tweet and retweet until my own social networking site launches. It’s called Bollockser. You post updates of any length, and it doesn’t matter what they’re about, as long as what you say is complete bollocks. Points are awarded based on rebollockses, which to be honest are a blatant rip-off of retweets. You don’t really ever win, and you only benefit from it when you tear yourself away and actually get a life—a bit like Twitter then.



Disclaimer—almost all of the quotes featured might have been slightly or possibly completely made up.

What do you think of Twitter as a social network? Have your say in the comments section below, on Facebook or on Twitter.