I joined Twitter in August 2010, over 12 years ago. At the time, I was in my late twenties and had just started blogging and working on my first data vis projects. Twitter allowed me to quickly connect with the comparably small data visualization, data journalism, and open data communities, getting to know people like Moritz Stefaner, Andy Kirk, Jan Willem Tulp, Mirko Lorenz, and many others.
I could dive right into the field by following hashtags like #ddj or #datavis. The connections I made were genuine and led to fun times at conferences, collaborations on freelance projects, and a fantastic full-time job at The New York Times. Also, Datawrapper probably wouldn’t exist without Twitter.
So, like many others, it’s safe to say that my career would have taken an entirely different turn without Twitter. That and also because I’m likely going to miss some people refusing to leave the sinking ship is why saddens me to leave.
Not going to go too deep into my reasons for leaving since you can probably imagine them already. Of course, the Musk takeover is playing a big part, but I have also withdrawn from Twitter more and more over the past years. The platform was just boiling over with hatred, and I was seeing way too many ads and other content I had never signed up for.
Since I’m a big fan of the World Wide Web and cool URIs don’t change, I decided against closing down the account and moving my Twitter archive to my website. So all blog posts, comments, and tweets linking to some of my tweets will still work.
# …into the Fediverse
To all my friends on Twitter: please join us in the Fediverse. Find software and an instance you resonate with, be it Mastodon, Pixelfed, or any other. The Fediverse is a wide and open space, and I’m sure everyone will find a place so we can all connect again.
I started my Fediverse account at vis.social in January 2018, but like many, I abandoned it after the initial excitement. So now I’m moving there for good.
See you on the other side.