Unraveling the Thread
Meta’s Twitter clone Threads officially launched today, although I, and a few hundred other people got access to the Threads app yesterday afternoon. I have been using it for as much time as I could today, given that I work full time.
These are just my initial impressions.
So the app was delivered to my iPhone yesterday afternoon. I also have an Android phone but I haven’t installed it on that just yet. Since it is a Meta product – the company originally called Facebook but since they now have more than just Facebook, it’s called Meta – you are given the ability to use your existing Instagram account to create your Threads account.
You might think this is just a nice thing, like all those “Login with your Google Account” buttons you see on some sites, but it is apparent that you need an Instagram account to even create a Threads account. Oh, and if you want to get rid of your Threads account, you have to delete your Instagram account to do so. I also suspect that if you’re naughty on Threads and get suspended or banned, you lose the associated Instagram account too. You can “deactivate” your Threads account but the information is still in their database, however, and doesn’t actually delete it.
First thing that bugged me was that you can only log into one account at a time. I have two Instagram accounts – one that’s private and for family only, and one for shitposting. I initially used my private account and then logged out of that one to use my public one.
The process was quick and easy, and the app gives you the opportunity to follow the same people that you follow on Instagram, even if they haven’t created their own Thread account.
The app is really plain and looks a lot like Twitter. It has everything you expect of a microblogging app – menu at the bottom, with a Home icon for your main feed, a search icon to search, an icon to make a post, an icon to go through your activity (replies, mentions, etc) and one that takes you to your profile.
Right away, your home feed is populated with all the posts from everyone on Threads. You cannot change this, and you can’t filter out posts from people you don’t follow. It seems, however, once you start following people, their posts take priority in your feed. That’s what it feels like to me anyway.
It also has all the basic features of Twitter, such as the ability to like a post, repost it, respond to it or repost it. You can post pictures from your phone, and videos.
Search could be better. At the moment, all you can do is search for other users on the platform. There’s no way to search for, say, posts with cat memes or recipes or whatever. This brings me to one Twitter feature Threads is sorely lacking – hashtags. I’ve seen users try to use hashtags but this feature is not part of Threads, so there’s no “trending topics” or anything like that. And, as I said, you can’t search for topics either.
Threads was built to be part of the fediverse, so in all likelihood was probably forked from Mastodon (like Gab and Truth Social). It isn’t federated right now, but Zuckerborg (yes, that spelling is on purpose) has promised it will come “soon”.
Right now it’s populated by leftists, although some right-wingers have already joined – you just have to look for them, follow them and their posts will populate your feed. The lefties are being their usual charming selves – calling people names, throwing around schoolyard insults, being colossal hypocrites, etc.
You can mute or block people, and I’ve already been blocked by a couple of crybaby leftists, so I’m off to a good start.
Since this is a Meta product, there is no expectation of privacy, and no expectation of being treated fairly if you’re a conservative. Threads already had warnings appear before following people like Donald Trump Jr, telling you that these accounts have “spread misinformation” in the past, and asking you if you’re sure you want to follow them. By the time I got around to following Don Jr., the warning no longer appeared. I did get warnings before a couple of posts I made, one in which I called one of the crybabies a “moron” and I can’t even remember the reason for the other warning. I was able to post it anyway, after accepting the warning and so far I haven’t been suspended or banned.
Trying to use the share sheet to post memes only worked once, and I have so many spicy memes on my phone, but am totally dismayed that I can’t share them just yet. I am able to share links, however, so that’s good, since if you follow me on Brighteon Social, you know I love sharing everything I read.
I haven’t noticed anything that I would call a showstopper – things not loading, app crashing, posts being swallowed up into the proverbial nothing, etc. I just hope that our sensitive data isn’t being stored in plaintext (long ago, Facebook actually stored its users’ credentials in plaintext – I am not even kidding).
One other thing that bothers me – you can only access it via the app. I am sure you’ll be able to use the service in a desktop browser at some point, but there’s no word on when that’s going to happen. Instead, if you go to https://www.threads.net it just takes you to this fancy splash page that you can play around with. You can scan the QR code to download the app.
Now, unlike Twitter, Threads already has access to one of the best advertising networks on the planet, so Meta’s advertising will likely already help pay for it, but so far I haven’t actually noticed any ads or even any sponsored posts. I am sure that will change soon, however, because I know Meta won’t pass up this golden opportunity to serve even more ads to people.
That being said, the censorship has already begun, of course:
Well that lasted all of 5 seconds…
ZeroHedge – On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero
And Twitter is already threatening to sue:
So will it be successful? I think so. I think Threads is probably the only app that can really give Twitter a run for its money, especially when the search is improved, hashtags are added and it gets onto the fediverse. I do not think that Twitter is going anywhere, however. The two social networks will just co-exist with leftists and non-political people gravitating towards Threads, where it’s “safe” from “hate speech” and other things normies don’t like, while Twitter will continue to be the place for breaking news, shitposts and political discussion.
Threads will never displace Twitter as long as it is as heavily censored as Instagram and Facebook are. A lot of the dumb lefties on Threads keep crowing about how Twitter is, like, totally over, but no – the bird app isn’t going anywhere.