What's Happening With Your Brand, Twitter?

Twitter's 'Brand X' now, apparently

Change over time is inevitable. Several social media platforms boasting millions of users have burned out over the years (e.g. Foursquare, MySpace), but I never thought Twitter would be on that list. I never thought I'd read this sentence on Wikipedia: "Twitter, Inc., was an American social media company." That stings.

Wikipedia will also tell you that Twitter became a pop-culture phenomenon amassing 330 million monthly active users and generating an estimated 500 million tweets per day.

In recent months, it's been duplicated by everyone from Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey with Bluesky to Meta with Threads. What these (and Mastodon) have in common is that they've all been labeled as Twitter competitors or the next Twitters.

But what happens when Twitter itself chooses to rebrand? Twitter is not even Twitter anymore.

Visit any website, and there's a good chance that social media buttons appear on the landing page directing to Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and maybe Pinterest. Now, the bird takes users to Elon Musk's "Brand X" page. (Not to be confused with the lucky person who locked down the @X handle in 2007. Will Musk buy it back?)

This week's rebranding Xploits are particularly confusing because Twitter has its own unique verbiage. Publishing a post became known as "tweeting," and sharing or amplifying someone else's content became "retweeting." Publishing in real-time at an event became known as "live tweeting." A series of tweets are "threads." (Meta should pay royalties for lifting the name).

Part of being a social media strategist circa 2009 was learning everything Twitter was capable of. Twitter challenged me with editing text to fit into 140 characters. The platform kept me informed as my main source of news and helped me find jobs. It connected me with people all over the world and inspired countless content ideas.

At one point in my career, I edited/scheduled an average of 100 tweets per day for a brand. Then there was the occasional Twitter Q&A with a celebrity to oversee, and hashtags to monitor. Twitter led me on incredible career experiences, including live tweeting red carpet events from the red carpet. I'll never forget the excitement of becoming "verified," a true social media badge of honor. And I’ll never forget you, Twitter Fail Whale IYKYK.

I used to tell people, "I tweet for a living." Who would've thought that would become obsolete?

As with all change, acceptance takes time. People seem to love reminiscing about their very first tweet. What better place to discuss this breaking news than on Twitter/X trending topics. #RIPTwitter

Leslie Richin
Leslie Richin is a digital media strategist and freelance writer living in Washington, D.C. In addition to Muse, she has contributed to Billboard, Hollywood Reporter, Spin, Paste, Adweek, Spotify for Artists News, PopMatters, ABC News, Bethesda Magazine and Curl.

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