Kill the Feed

2020.01.10 by Josh Erb; 326 words.

Historical context

I'm not extremely proactive on Twitter. I post very rarerly and when I do it's often trivial little things. That being said, I am extremely passive on Twitter. By this I mean that I'll log in at different times throughout the day to scroll through the feed and see what's happening in the world. However, more and more I'm realizing that even this passive engagement is unhealthy. I find myself in a state of endless scrolling. I increasingly feel like a duck destined for foie gras who's being force fed a bunch of fatty junk.

I started out the year thinking I might just trim down the list of who I'm following and set up some stricter content controls on my devices. But I've already caught myself side-stepping these guard rails less than a few weeks after putting them in place. I've increasingly begun to feel that the only real solution is purposeful privation.

Encouraged by seeing similar posts, most notably Andy Bell's AA-inspired confessional, I have decided to finally take action and cut the supply off at the source. What follows is a brief description of how I performed this reverse Houdini.

Convoluted solution

  1. Use a password generator to create a random 15 character string
  2. Update my Twitter email and append the random string as a + alias (thanks, gmail)
  3. Drop the full email address into a message to myself for a year from today (thanks, futureme.org)
  4. Change my password to another random string
  5. Throw away the new password (i.e. don't save it)
  6. Write blog about this process
  7. Post blog to Twitter so everyone knows where I went
  8. Log out of Twitter on all my devices

If you see me liking, retweeting, or tweeting in the next year, then you'll know I've outsmarted this little scheme and failed at this goal. Otherwise, see you all in 2021! 👋

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