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Sane Defaults for Digital Wellbeing

A collective effort to bring back sanity to social media and digital platforms

View the Project on GitHub osolmaz/sane-defaults

Twitter

As a social media platform, Twitter has medium toxicity. In terms of user control, Twitter allows for relatively fine-grained control over the feed, blocking accounts, and muting keywords.

Below are the recommendations for using Twitter.

Change feed to “Latest Tweets” mode

Click the “sparkles icon” at the top of your feed.

Click See latest Tweets instead.

Notice that it says You'll be switched back Home after you've been away for a while. Make sure that you occasionally check the top of your feed so that it says Latest Tweets instead of Home.

⚠️ Dark pattern: Twitter wants to make sure that everyone eventually converges to algorithmic feeds. ⚠️

Block toxic accounts

Navigate to the toxic account you want to block. Click the three-dots icon.

Click Block @.....

Confirm that you want to block the account. From this point on, you will not be shown tweets or retweets from this account.

Mute toxic words

Sometimes, it is not enough to just block accounts, as the toxic memes still creep into your feed. In that case, you may want to block certain keywords out of your feed. Twitter allows this functionality with “Muted keywords”. When you mute a keyword, tweets including it will not show up in your feed.

Twitter hid the link to this feature on the web app, but it can still be reached in mobile through Settings > Notifications > Muted > Muted words. You can also click here.

Click the plus icon.

In the next screen, simply enter the keyword that you want to mute. Don’t forget to set the most strict settings. Twitter will by default select “From people you don’t follow” instead of “From anyone”.

Click Save to save your setting. You will never see that word again in your feed.

Push notifications

We recommend disabling all push notifications, as they are almost never useful to the average user. Click here to adjust.

Email notificatations

We recommend disabling all email notifications, as they are almost never useful to the average user. Click here to adjust.

Muted notifications

We recommend muting notifications from people who don’t follow you. Click here to adjust.

You can also try muting notifications from people you don’t follow. This is up to your follower count, as the number of notifications increase dramatically with a large following.

Delete the app

If you are suffering from Twitter addiction, we recommend deleting the app from your phone, and just using it on the mobile browser. The extra steps involved while opening the site will help you control your habit, and the worsened user experience will condition you to decrease your usage.