Friday, October 13, 2023

Cleaning Out The Cobwebs

With the unfortunate decline of Twitter/X and the chaos of plenty of contenders vying to take its place, I've decided to grab a broom and a mop and come back to the old blog and clean out the dust and cobwebs. I know, blogging is so 2004, but at least I have some modicum of control over responses and don't have to subject people to hateful comments. Anyway, with these new social networks popping up like orange barrels during Ohio construction season, I've joined a few of them...or more. So, I'm going to give my impressions of each service as I use them and experience them.

Twitter/X (@AlienCG, @illuminatipod, @AlienBiblical)
OK, first off, that last sentence of that last paragraph is important for context, I am talking about this network from my own experience. Now that that's out of the way, I have no real problem with X when it comes to my primary account, @AlienCG. I follow the people I want to follow and have good interactions with folks. Also, this is where almost everyone I interact with online still is, so there's that. However, when it comes to @Illuminatipod, it's a dumpster fire of misinformation, disinformation, and absolute bullshit from the deepest sewers on the internet. Finally, when I'm bopping around @AlienBiblical it's an absolute garbage dump, but that's what I'm looking for because it gives me inspiration for posts over on my Bible Study Blog. The functionality and the fact that idiot-in-chief of that site wants everyone to pay for it makes it a steaming pile when it comes to responses.
Grade: AlienCG: B+/Illuminatipod: D-/BiblicalAlien: C

Mastodon (
Mastodon has been around for a while, but it wasn't until Twitter got bought that it would hit popularity. It took me a while to get into using this network, and due to the technical barrier for many, it's still slow growth. It's not as simple as signing up for an account and posting. There are several networks and I have another login out there somewhere, but I can't remember the server. I don't think Mastodon is going to be the Twitter killer for that reason, but it will stick around.
Grade: B-

Bluesky (,
The Twitter killer? Probably not, actually. First of all, Bluesky is still invite only which means you have to know someone in order to sign up. The quality of the journalism is up there as opposed to X since most of the journalists left the bird app behind. It's another slow-growing network due to the invite thing, but when it finally does open up, provided it's moderated properly, could be the replacement for Twitter when it comes to breaking news.
Grade: B+

Threads (aliencg)
Meta threw its hat into the short form social media game earlier this year when they introduced Threads. It showed great early growth thanks to the ease of entry for Instagram users. The app allows for a chronological timeline of only people you follow, but the default is still the "For You" feed which is algorithmically generated to show you influencers and other Instacelebs. It's not ideal for me because it's tied directly to Facebook and I've always kept that and Twitter separate. It seems to have died down now, but Threads also had the "Isn't Threads great!" problem when it comes to new social networks, which is why I was done with it after two days.
Grade: C-

Spoutible (@aliencg)
I really want to like Spoutible, but it came around later than the rest, and currently I only know two people on there. This is the new social media problem, fragmentation. The app is great and offers control over what you see and how you see it. It's a little busy which can be distracting. I don't have a lot of experience with it yet, so that is factored into the grade.
Grade: B+

Pebble (formerly T2) (@AlienCG)
Pebble was actually started by former Twitter employees and it shows. They use the 280 character limit, the interface is clean and uncluttered, and all in all it should be able to give X a run for its money. Like Bluesky, Pebble is invite only so its user base is smaller at the moment. They also don't have an app, so you have to use a web app which isn't the end of the world. They were originally called T2, which was a placeholder, and it was difficult to search for and find using Google. Unfortunately, they chose another name that may prove to be a misstep in ("Pebble Is..."). You see, Pebble is a defunct tech company, so anytime you want to find out information about the social network, you usually have to wade through a few pages of stories about a former watch maker.
Grade: B-