No more feeds, please

The perpetual scroll of social media feeds has become boring to me. I open up Reddit, Twitter, Hacker News, Instagram, and various others, yearning for a fresh discovery, only to be inundated with regurgitated clips and opinions designed solely to generate superficial engagement. I find myself mindlessly consuming low-quality content, squandering hours on platforms that offer little substance.

I am so sick of looking at feeds and consuming junk content that in the words of Elon are “regrettable time spent on a platform”. I don’t dislike the content on them for the most part, videos of dogs doing tricks, a podcast clip, sports videos. What I dislike is that I waste so much time on them and for the most part the content does not matter, it can be consumed at any point. There is no breaking “must-know” news, no ideas that will change how I run my business just recycled clips from other pages or some inane take designed for engagement. So much of the content can feel urgent or necessary to know but ultimately I just don’t care anymore.

There was a time I had a dozen email lists I subscribed to. Every day before work I would read those emails, check Hacker News, Lobste.rs and, Reddit to make sure that I was on the cutting edge of my field. It made sense for a while and I did keep up with a lot of trends. Perhaps I am getting older but the software engineering industry appears to have stabilised around a few technologies and techniques. It is no longer difficult to keep up since larger changes come three or four times a year and can be consumed at that time. My career shift into management has also made this less pressing since people-fields move at a much slower pace than software engineering.

Trends tend to hold little significance in the grand scheme of things. Lengthy debates regarding the most effective state management tool or the latest insights on animation performance may appear urgent at first glance, but their true relevance only materialises months later when the discussions have been resolved. The resurgence of server-side rendering serves as a testament to the cyclical nature of these ongoing debates.

Something I struggle to deal with is that it feels unapproachable to contribute to these feeds. On MySpace, Facebook and IRC I felt empowered to produce my own content even if it was junk that I cringe about a decade later. On today’s feeds I need to post at the right time of day, follow the meta and, even if I do post I am competing for my friend’s attention alongside influencers with entire marketing agencies backing them. Can I post my plants and dog? Is it worth it or do I need to think about engagement for my friends and family.

Please do not offer me any more feeds, I do not want them and I will not contribute to them. I have the information I need and I am removing sites with unlimited scrolling from my life. I continuously open them since I have a compulsion when sitting at home, TV is not very interesting and I can only read books for so long before I look for alternative stimulation.

I do not care what some influencer has to show me or what someone who has gamed the system decides I have to look at today. No more feeds, thanks.

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