[EDIT: As of February 2023, of all the new platforms I tried when Twitter fell apart, I’ve only really kept Mastodon. You can find my current social media links at the top of every page of this website.]
I’m now on CounterSocial. It’s only been three days, and I’m still finding my bearings, but I like it enough that I’ve subscribed for the Pro version. You can find my landing page at https://counter.social/@SarahAvery.
I’ve also registered on CoHost. They’re so overwhelmed by Twitter refugees right now that I’m still in the queue to be verified as a live human and can’t post yet. It’s been three days, and I still can’t assess whether I like the site. That said, maybe I’d rather be on a site that cares enough about whether accounts are bots that it risks losing a user over it than on a site that’s awash in disinfo bots from St. Petersburg. You can find me on CoHost at https://cohost.org/SarahAvery.
I’ve looked at PillowFort, but it doesn’t look super useful for writers. I have a Tumblr account I’ve never used — I hear rumblings on Twitter of a return exodus of Tumblr users.
Where are you all hanging out, aside from Twitter and Facebook? Are there other platforms I should check out?
I’m going to miss Twitter if it self-destructs completely. A lot of small presses and magazines do their most effective publicity there, and without the ability to announce their crowdfunding campaigns on Twitter, many of them will go under before any new genre water cooler coalesces. It was also the water cooler for the publishing industry generally, before targeted harassment campaigns drove a lot of editors, agents, and authors to abandon the place. Unsurprisingly, the people of color in publishing were the ones who got hit hardest and left first.
My Twitter experience was, overall, really positive. It helped that I blocked bots and trolls swiftly and systematically, and I was never a big enough fish to attract targeted harassment. I made a point of following people whose lives were different from mine, many of whom were patient and generous about explaining things that folks with the kinds of privilege I have might not figure out on our own. My Kickstarter campaign got a lot of its backers from Twitter, especially after Neil Gaiman (!) retweeted it. Most unexpectedly, Mike Scott of The Waterboys became one of my fans, buying up all my books and tweeting about them. How weird is that? A lot of people I have valued this tiny online connection with are probably going to disappear from my life permanently. No matter how small those connections have been, it’s sad to expect to lose them, especially so many of them in what will probably be pretty short order.
Younger folks are more freaked out, I think, than GenX users like me are. We’ve seen platforms come and go. Something useful will take its place. The new things will have good and bad points. Life will go on. I still miss LiveJournal, which might still be with us if it hadn’t been bought by Russians and then declared it a violation of terms of service to criticize Putin. The years of my life that I documented there are still up on its friendlier knockoff, Dreamwidth. In my perfect world, Dreamwidth would make a huge comeback right about now. (Yeah, Avery, dream on.)