If you haven’t read my previous posts about Twitter, I recommend reading them for the back story and how a phone number got my account suspended.
Twitter eventually provided me with the option to delete a tweet that had caused concern. What was even more intriguing was that someone had posted the exact same tweet word for word, and their account remained active. It’s possible that my account had drawn attention for some reason, leading to this action as a means to close it down. This suspicion was further fueled by my subsequent experiences after regaining access to my account.
Upon reactivating my account, I initially noticed that I had lost all my followers and the people I followed. This is a normal occurrence, as accounts take some time to rebuild their following. However, after a week of activity on the account, I realized something unusual: no one was engaging with my tweets, replies, or any other content. Normally, I would receive likes, occasional retweets, and sometimes replies, especially in the case of topic-specific conversations. To investigate this, I used a service designed to check for shadowbanning, and it confirmed that I could not be found.
Then Twitter took a step that I find deeply concerning. They marked all of my past posts and images as “sensitive.” I checked my account settings and found that I hadn’t set my posts to be sensitive. Twitter provided an option to appeal this label on every single post, which I did by stating that the content was not sensitive. I even questioned specific instances, such as why a picture of a two-way radio was considered sensitive. Unfortunately, none of my appeals received a response.
One of the images I posted received this warning within 3 seconds of being posted. I shared the same image on my DolfinWX account, and it did not receive the same warning. Others saved and posted the image to their accounts without encountering any warnings.
After several months of attempting to resolve these issues with my account, I decided it was best to create a new account and let the old one remain inactive. I couldn’t delete it because my API tokens were associated with that account, which the DolfinWX bot uses.
As for the new era of Twitter under Elon Musk’s leadership, it has been a subject of significant discussion. Musk’s retweeting of false information about the Pelosi incident set a particular tone for Twitter’s management. This action seemed to encourage various controversial groups to become more vocal on the platform. I personally experienced an encounter with a MAGA supporter who replied to one of my tweets with derogatory comments about the company and me.
These events led me to question whether these decisions were merely reckless or a deliberate strategy to drive certain users away, potentially shaping the user base in a specific direction. I also pondered whether it was an attempt to reduce the company’s value for a potential sale to a different party, particularly one with far-right leanings. To borrow a phrase, I am simply raising questions.
For me, this marked the end of my Twitter journey. I first halted the cron jobs for DolfinWX, which had been posting “Dolphin AI Thoughts,” weather updates, and APRS information to Twitter. Subsequently, I deleted all of DolfinWX’s tweets. Then I deleted all of the tweets, retweets, and likes on my main account, leaving a message of abandonment in the profile and a pinned tweet. I notified everyone I regularly interacted with about my move to meow.social/web/@FinnleyDolfin.
My next steps involve finding a way for DolfinWX to interact with Mastodon, which may require setting up its own instance since it operates as a bot.
[Update October 15, 2023: DolfinWX has a new home at https://botsin.space/@dolfinwx]
If you’re considering deleting your Twitter account, here are some suggestions:
- Give serious consideration before deleting your Twitter account, as your Twitter handle may become available for someone else to use after a certain period of inactivity. Instead, leave it active with information about where your followers can find you on other platforms.
- Use a service to delete all of your tweets, retweets, likes, and media. Keep in mind that deleting a tweet may not automatically remove associated media, so use different services to thoroughly clean your account, repeating the process for a few days if necessary.
[Update October 15, 2023: With the API changes, these services may not function any longer.]
- Double-check that all your tweets have been deleted by searching for your username. If any tweets still appear, delete them manually or use the tweet delete service again.
- Review your account settings to ensure that location, marketing, interests, and other options are toggled off as desired. It’s wise to leave notifications for direct messages enabled for added security. Most importantly, enable two-factor authentication (2FA) with the app option.
[Update October 15, 2023: I don’t know the current state of 2FA so this may or may not work.]
- If possible, consider using a different mobile number to attach to your Twitter account, rather than your primary number, to enhance security in the event of a data breach.
- Update your profile with a message indicating that the account has been abandoned and provide information about where you can now be found.