On twitter poisoning

At first I was dismissive of this oped by Jaron Lanier on how  Trump, Musk and Kanye Are Twitter Poisoned because I thought he was overstating the case for that trio. I thought: those three were messed up long before twitter!

The key thing that changed my mind on the idea of twitter poisoning was this:

Twitter poisoning is a little like alcoholism or gambling addiction, in that the afflicted lose all sense of proportion about their own powers. They can come to believe they have almost supernatural abilities. Little boys fantasize about energy beams shooting from their fingertips.

When I read that, a light went off. I know people on twitter like that! People who started off small and went on to accumulate many followers, and along the way they have suffered that form of poisoning. They have lost their sense of proportion. They seem to think they are more influential than they really are. In addition to what Lanier describes, the poisoning also seems to make some of them harder and meaner somehow. Less their former selves. The vanity that rose from their position on twitter curdled them.

Go read the article to get a full sense of this affliction.

Comments are closed.