Unless you have been completely cut off from the outside world and have no access to current events, and if that is the case good for you, you probably know about the decline of Twitter. Decline is honestly a nice way of saying the absolute dumpster fire that has become Twitter since Elon bought the social media platform.
Social media has become such a big part of so many people’s lives, and for many, it is how they make a living earning money through the content they create. But, over the last few years, people are starting to understand that social media companies can’t be trusted because all it takes is one change in their TOS and suddenly people are without.
Let’s look at a few examples…
- Tumblr – In 2018 Tumblr changed its TOS to restrict nudity on its platform. Users from all over the world were furious and over the course of 3 months, Tumblr lost 33% of its user base and usage statistics for the remaining users were terrible.
- TikTok – TikTok has for years not been very kind to its creators and it’s AI system is constantly banning or removing content that doesn’t violate its TOS, but due to how TikTok is built it makes it impossible to appeal. Due to its abuse of both creators and users, it’s estimated TikTok has lost over 200 million users since 2020.
- Instagram – Wanting to be just like the “cool” Tiktok Instagram changed its TOS and algorithm to prioritize videos or IG Reels over images. The very thing that made Instagram famous in the first place. This change and shift caused many famous creators such as Peter McKinnon to actively suggest that users leave Instagram and use alternative platforms such as Vero.
- OnlyFans – Considered banning adult content briefly despite the fact that adult content is what made OnlyFans profitable in the first place. Thankfully the loss in profits and the overwhelming outrage at the decision forced the leaders and owners of OnlyFans to change their minds.
These are just a few examples, but Twitter seems to be joining the exclusive club of social media platforms that shoot themselves in the foot with how they treat their employees, content creators, and users. Could they recover? Maybe, Tumblr is seeing a resurgence in its user base despite some sordid history, so maybe there is hope, but this brings me back to a theory I have and have had for some time.
Social media was an incredible invention, and it connected people from all around the world in ways no one had ever seen before. But as time has advanced and social media platforms have improved so has censorship. Social media platforms changing their TOS, algorithms, and priorities are inevitable because a company never has the best interest of its user in mind, only its profit margin, and bottom line.
With that in mind, the best option for most content creators is to start their own website and post their content there. I know it isn’t the easiest idea, and it certainly puts more responsibility on the content creator but it is the only way to secure and safeguard your content. Having your own website allows you the opportunity to post whatever you want without fear of being censored or shadowbanned. You are the master of your own site and the decider of your own fate.
So go out there and start your own site. I wouldn’t be surprised if we start seeing plugins available in the near future that will mimic all the things social media platforms offer, but from the safety and security of your own site.
What do you think?