I keep my Twitter account pretty boring. I don’t Tweet very often and the people I follow are mainly normal game development folks. I also follow some athletes and a few actors and actresses. For the most part, it’s tame stuff so I have no qualms about checking Twitter at work.
This week I decided to look at my Twitter feed at work. As I start scrolling, I see text tweets, a few images, more text only tweets, and then I see more images. It takes my brain a few seconds to process the latest image that’s scrolled into view. My brain finally catches up and I realize I’m seeing a naked woman mounting a very large penis. I’m seeing genitals on screen. As I’m at work, I’m startled for a moment. I quickly scroll away but since I have a really sweet desk by the window, most people can’t see my monitors.
I cautiously scroll back to the image to see how this wound up on my feed. Did someone I follow just tweet straight up porn? Then I see the top of tweet. One of the people I follow liked a tweet that had the porn on it. Not only did this person liked this one tweet, it was at least half a dozen porn tweets, all now littering my feed. This person I follow is actually someone I know in real life, a former co-worker. Normally he keeps his Twitter activity pretty boring, but not today.
I began to wonder if he knew that his “liked” tweets showed up in his followers feeds. May be he does know and doesn’t care? Whenever I liked a tweet, I always assume everyone that follows me will know I liked that tweet. That’s why I never like any porn tweets or anything like that. Sure, I’ll look at them but I don’t want anyone to know which ones I like.
When I got home that evening, my feed was absolutely clean. I’m not sure what algorithm Twitter uses to display “liked” tweets in your timeline but perhaps the passage of time removes them. Or perhaps someone told my ex-coworker to stop liking porn tweets.
Now I’m always a little more careful when I check Twitter.