Celebrities, Lefties Claim They Are Leaving Twitter But Their Accounts Remain Open

Hordes of primarily left-leaning tweeters have been forced to scramble in response to Elon Musk’s takeover of the social media platform, if not for the exits then at least for a social media backup plan.

Disgruntled Twitter users left the service in waves in search of workable substitutes. When Twitter approved Musk’s $44 billion offer to buy the social media business in April, the first one became public. When he finished the acquisition in October, the second came out.

The Tesla billionaire’s more provocative actions as Twitter’s chief tweeter have been followed by additional wavelets and ripples, including the firing of half of Twitter’s staff, the restoration of the former President Trump’s suspended account, and most recently, the five-word post “My pronouns are Prosecute/Fauci,” which made fun of both the queer and public health communities.


Some disgruntled Twitter users have deleted their accounts. Thousands more have flocked to the virtual doors of previously unnoticed platforms Mastodon, Hive, and Post while maintaining their Twitter usernames and adopting new ones on other websites.

Currently, social media colonists are working to reestablish their networks on new platforms while monitoring the old one to see how the Twitter battles develop. David Karpf, a political scientist at the George Washington University, declared, “I fear Twitter is crumbling apart. I’ll be one of the last users to stop using Twitter, too. In 2008, Karpf joined Twitter. He built up a following one tweet at a time up until 2019, when he wrote a post comparing Bret Stephens, a conservative columnist, to a bedbug. Stephens cried foul. The conversation spread widely. Karpf’s supporters erupted.

Karpf followed the example set by many academics after Musk entered the scene. He created a profile on the decentralized social network Mastodon, which was introduced in 2016. Mastodon, which was all but unknown last spring, has now reached a milestone of 2 million users, which was hilariously announced on Twitter.

Twitter, in Karpf’s opinion, has become “the site where everyone goes to moan about Twitter.” He does not want to go, though.

People have had more than a decade to build up a following on Twitter and construct a list of people they follow, according to Karpf. And that’s difficult to duplicate.

Mastodon has a rising user base, but it still falls short of replicating the vibrant and raucous Twitter-verse, which has over 200 million active users and an untold number of millions of inactive users.

Mastodon has nonetheless attracted a lot of attention and a certain amount of snob appeal, earning articles in the New Yorker and New York Times. Millions of Twitter refugees could relocate to at least two other sites if the exodus continues.

One is Hive Social, a website whose founder, 24-year-old Raluca Pop, also runs it. According to some reports, Hive has surpassed 2 million users during the Twitter restructuring. Pop launched the website in 2019 and, according to reports, last month she hired a second employee.

Author and disability rights activist Amanda Leduc left Twitter in November in keeping with a promise she made when Musk unveiled his plans. On Hive, she made a brand-new account. Leduc wrote in an email that she discovered “some of the early-Twitter vibe of like-minded individuals connecting and boosting each other up” there.

“I miss Twitter a lot. It offered a terrific method to build community and was a tremendous resource for disabled people in particular. However, over the past few years it has simply become too poisonous for me, and leaving was safer for my heart and mind.


Hive shut down its servers in late November due to high demand and frustrating security issues, and it hasn’t switched them back on since, according to an update issued, appropriately, on Twitter.

Post News, which Noam Bardin, the former CEO of the navigation service Waze, created this fall, is another possible Twitter replacement. Bardin sought to capitalize on the relationship between social media and news, which is today mostly served by Facebook and Twitter, the younger sibling of Twitter.

Bardin declared on Twitter, “I think the feed is the future newspaper.”

A waitlist of 400,000 members, of which 150,000 have received invitations to activate their accounts, was recently boasted of by Post News. The limited team at Bardin is also trying to handle the influx of emigrants from Twitter.

A social media decision point has come for prominent people who don’t want to lose a portion of their audience. In October, author Molly Jong-Fast signed up for Mastodon. Greta Thunberg, a climate activist, registered last month. California Democratic Rep. Mike Thompson posted the URL of his brand-new Mastodon account on Monday.

An assistant said, “Mike is just attempting to communicate with as many constituents as possible.

How many Twitter users will unfollow over Musk’s entry is a mystery to observers. According to one research, the website lost more than a million accounts in the days following his takeover.

Interestingly, only 1.6% of the 140,000 Twitter users who threatened to switch to Mastodon actually did so, according to a study that was published in the journal New Scientist.

Professor of art history Rebecca Zorach from Northwestern University is an example of the other 98.4%. Zorach, a self-described leftist, joined Mastodon this year. Using software that enables tweeters to find followers who disclose Mastodon addresses in their profiles, she is meticulously rebuilding her Twitter following on the new site. There, she discovered a small portion of her Twitter following.

She started “blocking Musk and all his buddies and anybody who supports him” while also thinning out her Twitter posts. She hasn’t abandoned Twitter, though.

She stated, “What I like about Twitter is that I’ll run across folks with intriguing opinions that I wouldn’t have otherwise encountered. “Black Twitter has taught me a lot. Twitter for climate science has taught me a lot. COVID Twitter has taught me a lot of things. They are items that would not appear in my Facebook news stream.

Some famous people and well-known companies have stopped using Twitter, usually after threatening to do so if Elon Musk follows through on his ambitions to restore content moderation on the platform. Actress Whoopi Goldberg, model Gigi Hadid, and clothing label Balenciaga all on the list.

Other A-list celebrities pledged to stop using Twitter but instead kept their accounts open, indicating a potential comeback. “Grey’s Anatomy” creator Shonda Rhimes tweeted in October, “Not waiting around for whatever Elon has planned. Bye.” Her account is still active.

Singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles tweeted, “Welp. Twitter has been enjoyable. I’m out.” Her account has been active for several weeks. Elton John announced last week that he had “chosen to no longer use Twitter” due to the spread of false information there. Additionally, Sir Elton keeps an active account.

Such public goodbyes “may give the impression that people are truly departing, even if they aren’t,” according to Jake Teeny, a Northwestern marketing expert.

In the days following Musk’s takeover, Twitter usage increased. According to reports, the website recorded 245 million daily users on November 6.

Professorial lecturer Jason Mollica from the School of Communication at American University said, “We’re kind of rubbernecking.” What will Musk say next that?

Despite having a Mastodon account, Mollica continues to tweet frequently. I stay because I established a network there, he claimed. And therein lays Mastodon, Hive, and Post’s issue. They feel like empty rooms compared to Twitter.

Kelly Cutler, a lecturer in integrated marketing communications at Northwestern, asked: “Where are the critical mass going to land?” Because the quality of a social media network depends on its user base.

Some experts believe Twitter’s days are numbered, including Karpf at GWU. Cutler and others believe there is no workable alternative.

I believe that people prefer to travel to places where there are more people and more people in general, she remarked. And that’s still Twitter right now.

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