BRAVO to Miley Cyrus Quitting Twitter, Woo-who’s Next?

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About six months ago, I wrote a post on why Twitter would not last beyond the end of 2010. Since then, Twitter has climbed the Alexa web traffic rankings from #289 to #13.

But it had to.

There’s no fun in predicting the demise of something after it started going downhill. That’s observation, not insight.

After a summer of hype when Oprah gave the twit a push, when activism twitting became the rage like what was happening in Iran, and when Michael Jacko’s death gave some unexpected bonus buzz, mustering #13 on the rankings isn’t what I’d call signs I’m wrong. You have to understand web traffic at that level is exponential, meaning each step is probably 10 times harder than the last one. Even MySpace, which has been dwindling fast in the Facebook of other social media sites growth, is at #11 ahead of Twitter. Meanwhile, Facebook has steadily been moving from #5 to #2. If anything, I’m feeling better about my prediction than April. It’s taken Twitter a while to creep up the last few steps and I’m thinking it might peak next spring before plateauing and declining by the end of 2010 to a point where it will become just another popular site on the decline, like Flickr at #32, but not hot stuff like Twitter is today.

One sign of what might be the tiny start to Twitter’s decline was the recent story about Miley Cyrus quitting Twitter. We’ve generally only had stars sign on to Twitter to date, or stars getting in trouble because of it, as well as lots of regular people. I haven’t heard any real big stories of very well known people quitting, though I’m sure there have been such stories. But here’s a big teen influence leaving Twitter behind, supposedly for reasons of wanting more privacy as in the rap she posted on YouTube below.

I don’t much like the rap, though I’d have to say the one-liner reason was pretty quotable.

“I stopped living for moments and started living for people.”
– Miley Cyrus on why she deleted her Twitter account

Personally, I don’t really care why Miley went off Twitter. I just know she’s going to influence a lot of young girls to go off Twitter, too. And once the girls are gone, what would the boys do?

Other stars will only “independently” come to the same conclusion soon enough, I think. Maybe Miley won’t have enough persuasive power to get a bunch of other stars off Twitter, but someone will eventually, or more likely, it’ll hit a critical mass and plummet. It’s like having your friends go off Twitter. How many will go off before you, or the rest of your circle of friends, will decide not to bother with it any more? It’s the opposite question to that philosophical question of how many person does it take to make a society? How many people will it take to dissolve a society?

With the exodus I’m predicting, by the end of 2010, Twitter is going to be street slang for quitter.

One thing I never got about stars and Twitter. If you’re worried about the paparazzi following you around, why give them more reason to? It’s not like you’re sharing enough of your life that you give away everything they might have been able to get by following you around literally rather than virtually. You’re constantly giving them their next assignment! And if you’re not followed around by the paparazzi cause you’re only a rising, but not yet bonafide star, a glance at your followers compared to someone else’s would be all I need to decide whether you’d be worth harassing based on your “demand” value gauged by Twitter followers.

So well done, Miley! Congratulations on the big step! Woo-who’s next?

Well, I suppose I could be. I had an account for my social media studies purposes. Plus, I had the Digitalcitizen name, and I’m not giving it up cause I know someone who wants it. I’m just going to vow to only sign in when I actually want to learn something about Twitter that I will need to be signed in to do. How about that for “quitting”?

Flesch-Kincaid Grade Reading Level: 8.1


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