Six Phases of Twitter Grief

Just two weeks ago social media venue, Twitter, got hit by hackers-- barring many of its users from 140 characters of condensed camaraderie.

I was one of those barred. And during this cold, bleak time in Twitville, I spent four days where I could see my friends post... joke... laugh... feast on the banquet of beautiful banality inside the cheerful cottage walls of the inviting Twitstead....

But I could not post myself. No, friends, I could only press my nose to the glass like a Dickensian orphan matchgirl and hope I wouldn't be run off by Tweetly bobbies saying, "Whassall 'is 'en?" And then be sent to a workhouse of some more cumbersome social media platform...

Like being made to develop time-suckingly addictive yet pointless apps for Facebook.

It was a Twitter Tantalus.

So during these four days of Twitter withdrawal, that is when I discovered the Six Phases of Twitter Grief:

1.) Shock.
"I can log in, but I can't post. I really can't post. Oh my God, I can't post I can't post I can't post!!

"Now no one can see the absolutely, crucially, vital Tweet I had all planned about pocket lint. And my pithy thoughts on the aesthetic and functional beauty of both bacon and coffee.

"Modern 140-character philosophy is taking an enormous hit because I can log-in but I can't post! It's unbelievable!"

2.) Denial.
"Maybe I can post, and I'm just not being patient enough. That must be it. Maybe I just need to wait longer.

"Maybe I can let that Tweet process in the background while I do other things.... Sure, I can do that. No problem. Patience. All I need is just a little patience. A wise man once said that. I think it was Axel Rose...

"Hey-- maybe it's processed in the last two seconds I was thinking about Axel Rose.... Yes?...


"Flyin' Spaghetti Monster on a platter, why isn't it frikkin' posting?!"

3.) Bargaining.
"Twitter Customer Service Peeps, I'm writing to ask why I seem to be banned from your service. I've been good. I've been nice. And I will be even more gooder and nicerer going forward, if you will just let me post again.

"I mean, I'll follow all sorts of new people.... In fact, how 'bout you? Do you have an account, Twitter Customer Service Dude? I'll follow you. I mean, don't you need more loyal followers? Of course you do! And I'll read every one of your Tweets and follow every link you share and retweet you and everything. Just please, please, please let me post again!...


"Are you there?"

4.) Guilt.

"Maybe I Tweeted too many of my own links in the time I was Tweeting. And that's why I can't post...

"Maybe I've been banned because I was sharing too much stuff at one time!

"Maybe I broke the Terms of Service and I never even knew it, because I was so self-involved!...

"Maybe I should have retweeted other peoples' Tweets more often. Maybe I should have participated in more Twitter theme discussions. Maybe I blocked one too many XXX hoochies wanting to show me photos of themselves starkers, and I shouldn't have been so unfriendly.

"Why, oh why, couldn't I have been a better Twitizen?"

5.) Anger.
"Well, if they don't frikkin' want me to Tweet, then it's their loss. I never really liked Twitter anyway. 140 characters? That's not writing, that's a fortune cookie!

"Ha- Who needs 'em? I have better things to do with my time, anyway."

6.) Depression.
"Meh. What's the point of social media, anyway? I mean, it's just as fake and pointless as all off-line relationships are.

"It's not comfortable, and real... like lying here in my bed under the comforter where I can be quiet and still and really think about things that matter...

"Like, I couldn't really Tweet the lyrics to an Emo song like I'm going to write here... There wouldn't be enough characters.


"What do you rhyme with 'fetal position'?"
Acceptance and hope!

"Well, I guess I'd just be better off spending my energy writing a new blog post, instead, since these Emo lyrics ended up being so pathetically funny and--

"Hey, lookit there! What do you know? I can log-in!"


Mike said...

It's a terrible feeling to be outside looking in, isn't it? Like watching the other kids havefun at a birthday party that you weren't invited to.

Jenn Thorson said...

Mike- (sniff, sob) Yess... oh, yesssss!



Jaffer said...

I missed that fiasco and I only heard of it when I got home.

I just jump to Facebook whenever twitter goes down. All my important tweeps are there too - except not all of them logged in at the same time !

Jenn Thorson said...

Jaffer- I wouldn't have thought anything of it, if I hadn't seen other folks I was following able to post. I was convinced I was doing something wrong.

Just as well you missed it! :)

Claire said...

I think there needs to be a Panic stage:

"OH shit what if ALL those times I hit send and it didn't tweet, means that when it comes back on they will all publish at once!"


Not that I did that or anything :)


Is it taking an age for anyone else for the comment box to appear?

and to you Jenn, why did thou abandon under the post comment box type thing?



Jenn Thorson said...

Claire- Oh, I have had it post all on its own in a big ol' Tweetly collective, just like you described. But it doesn't TELL you it accepted the Tweet. So you have NO idea its nefarious plans.

I abandoned the under the post comment box because it had gotten completely boogered up for a week, and was causing commentors all sorts of problems. So rather than give everybody headaches, I decided to go back to this method. I don't prefer it, but at least it's been working.

C.B. Jones said...

Fortune cookie...

I've gnawed on the fail whale before. Twitter is NOT a fortune cookie.

Tiggy said...

There's nothing more pathetic that a Fail Wail.

Jenn Thorson said...

CB- Well, okay, so whale blubber isn't exactly sweet and crispy... And it doesn't come with nifty advice inside either... Wait--
unless the whale swallowed an Eskimo or something!

Tiggy- It's true. How many of us have known the sadness of the failed Whale.

Drowsey Monkey said...

omg - lmao ... that had me laughing out loud and I'm not just saying LOL ... I really was ... hahahaha!

That's all so true! I went through those stages .... hahahaha.

That pocket lint tweet would have rocked.

Leeuna said...

Perhaps there should be a back-up social network called something like oh I don't know, maybe "Jitter"? That way everyone could reconvene there when Twitter goes down.

I've had to block several half-nekkid hoochies who have chosen to follow me. I don't know why they would want to! Ewwwwww. I don't want to see that!

jay said...

I've never seen the point of twitter ... but maybe that's just me. Clearly it is highly addictive.

Hmm. Maybe you got enrolled in some 'Twitterers Anonymous' thing by your relatives?

Tee hee.

MikeWJ at Too Many Mornings said...

I don't Twitter. Don't give a shit abot it. But where are you hearing about these hoochies? Hoochies are interesting. Maybe my spam filters are too strict!

nonamedufus said...

Priceless, Jenn. Well done. You've exposed us blithering twitoholics for who we really are. I have seen the enemy and he is us!

Jenn Thorson said...

Drowsey- I will save the pocket lint tweet then for a really pithy moment. :) Thanks!

Leeuna- I think you have something there with Jitter. You'd better go into production immediately for that one-- get the URLs and copyrights. I don't want you to miss out on making your millions.

Jay- It was actually quite handy when one of my fellow humor bloggers was going into the hospital. His friends all got the word out quickly on his status through Twitter.

Mike- Ya gotta be on Twitter, and then the hoochies just come out of the woodwork to follow YOU. You don't even have to seek them out. For the pro-hoochie, it must be like finding the Lost City of Gold!

Nonamedufus- Well, you know my Tweet schedule already. We have both seen the power of the Tweet.

~Static~ said...

And the evils of social networks and internet addiction strike again. What's this you say? I cannot post to Twitter? I CANNOT POST?! NOOOOOO! MADNESS! Oh God! what WILL I do?....hello Facebook!

Frank Lee MeiDere said...

Perfectly formed and executed. Brilliant, Jenn.

kathcom said...

Now I know what I'll go through if I get banned.

I already feel guilty, if only because I suspect that your tweet about pocket lint would be more worthy than anything I've posted or will ever post.

Jenn Thorson said...

Static- Yeah, but Twitter is a whole different ballgame than Facebook. It's apples to oranges. Mets to Yankees. Um, skateboards to roller-blades. :)

Frank- Glad you enjoyed it, fine sir!

Kath- I don't think you'll get banned. And pocket lint Tweets are SO overrated these days. I will have to hold back so I'm not just jumping on the bandwagon. :)

~Static~ said...

@Jenn - Ummm, yes, I am aware of the comparison(s). I was being sarcastic. =]

Jenn Thorson said...

Static- But where's the fun if I can't give you a hard time about it? :)

~Static~ said...

This is true. Hence our plaful verbal sparring!....You.
*gently taps Jen on the chin with fist

~Static~ said...

btw, have you added me on Twitter? because I don't do Facebook...

Jenn Thorson said...

Static- Yupper! I'd followed you a while back, somewhere when I first got started on it and was finding my humor blogger buds.

~Static~ said...

@Jen - Super!
Now, about those XXX Hoochie Tweeps... I've sent you photo links of me in the buff by the dozens and you haven't so much as said thanks or retweeted them. What's the dealio, Mamacita? (y'know, coz we made it thru the first three stages of Twitter grief, now I'm staging the fourth...which of course is... GUILT..ahahahaha!)

Jenn Thorson said...

Static- Oh, so THAT was YOU! :) I was thrown by the fact it wasn't a shot of a nude Arsenio Hall. (Talk about shocking!)

~Static~ said...

@ Jen - What the....? Are we talking about the same thing here? I've never...GAH!!
*shakes hands up towards sky
(moving into THE FIFTH STAGE: Anger-thanks for the therapy)

p.s. Did you get this one yet? Definitely Arsenio. Oh yeah.

Jenn Thorson said...

Static- AGH! My eyes, my eyes!!!

~Static~ said...

@ Jenn - Aww, I thought you'd like that I want to crawl into a bottle and never come out again (moving into THE SIXTH STAGE: Depression)