Twitter, I love you, but sometimes you are a total fucking douchetard.
I feel like I'm pointing out an elephant in a room, or that an emperor who thinks he has invisible clothes is actually naked (hey someone should write a story about that), but Twitter, here are some things about you that are stupid, and always have been:
1. Twitter implicitly implies that people with longer usernames deserve shorter replies than people with shorter usernames, because the name you address a reply to counts as part of the 140 character limit. How does this make any god damn sense? It's like if you go to the post office, and they tell you that your letter came under the maximum weight allowance, but couldn't be sent because the recipient's name was too long. What?
Solution: Make anything coming after "@" not count towards the 140 character limit. Yes, people will abuse it by @whoopsIwentover140charslol, but I'm gonna go ahead and make a bold prediction: the internet will not explode if a message longer than 140 characters gets posted to Twitter.
2. Similarly, web addresses take up characters. URL shortening services exist (and continue to be created) just to get around this. I wouldn't call this out as stupid, if the rest of the entire internet hadn't already figured out an even more elegant solution than making the URL shorter:
Solution: See, when Al Gore invented the internet, he thought of these things called "links", that would "link" between web pages. Even neater, instead of typing the full address of a page every time, you can actually take any word and "link" it, which will underline it and make it clickable. Twitter, maybe you should look into this "link" phenomenon that is taking the internet by storm.
3. This is the stupidest thing about Twitter, that I can't believe people just take for granted: why do we read Twitter in bottom-to-top chronological order?
In almost every (every?) language, when you are reading a story out of a book, things that happen first go at the top, and things that happen after that go below it. Your eyes start at the top of the page, then smoothly read left to right, down one line, left to right, down, etc.
But no Twitter, you gotta be different. If Twitter was a novel, it would work like this:
- Go to Twitter.com (or fire up a client), load up the novel you're reading. The last paragraph of the book appears at the top of the screen. SPOILER ALERT.
- You scroll down to the bottom, click the "more" button, scroll more, skim each paragraph, click more, until 5 minutes later, you find a paragraph that looks vaguely familiar, so you figure you probably left off somewhere around there.
- You read the last unread paragraph. Your eyes scan left to right, top to bottom. Then, to get to what happens next, your eyes skip up, over the paragraph you just read, to read the paragraph above it.
- Everything seems oddly familiar since you had to skim the entire story just to figure out where you were in the book.
- You finally get to the end, at the top of the first page, and see that more of the story has been written. You refresh for new content, then start the whole skimming-for-where-you-left-off process over again.
And of course, Twitter is kind of like a big ongoing story of things happening with your friends. Yet we put up with this bizarre non-chronological order of reading it.
Solution: Make Twitter read chronologically from top to bottom like everything else on the fucking planet. And implement a bookmark function in which the top of the screen is always where you last left off.
People would complain about these solutions. Boo hoo. So keep the old options buried in some menu, and have the rest of Twitter finally fulfill its purpose as a hassle-free way to keep up with the story of people's lives, in 140 characters of content at a time.