You Just Need Space

Today I discovered a Chrome plugin: You just need Space. Its tagline? “You don’t really want to dump Facebook: You just need Space.” Space here comes in the form of a 3 second breathing exercise before accessing whichever website or app you find addictive.

I appreciate their effort. Truly, I do. But I can’t help and laugh. If these are really addictions, what are a few deep breaths going to accomplish? “You don’t really want to dump heroin… You just need to breathe first!” Fuck no! I need to quit heroin!

How to Get Twitter Followers in 2 Steps

#1 Create and Share Content You Find Interesting

It should be obvious that, before using any kind of special tactics, you need to create and/or share content that you find interesting. You need to create value. Start there.

#2 Cross Your Fingers

And wait. Seriously. Don’t do anything else. Don’t “follow back” just for the sake of it. Definitely don’t ask people to follow you back. Don’t mind your following / followers ratio. Post whenever you feel like it. Use hashtags, or don’t.

I see people with hundreds of thousands of followers, following hundreds of thousands of people. I can only assume as part of a follow back scheme. Why? Like, really? You’re keeping up with a stream of tweets from over 100k people? I can’t imagine you have time for much else.

If everybody did that we’d all have millions of followers, and no one actually reading anything we say.

A handful of people that are genuinely interested in what you have to say and share are worth more than an artificially inflated vanity number. Nobody that matters cares about your number of followers. Don’t waste your time.

Black Mirror

I just watched the first episode of “Black Mirror.” Set in the near future, the story begins as the prime minister of England is woken up in the middle of the night. The princess of England has been kidnapped! She will die in a few hours, unless…

The prime minister fucks a pig on live TV.

I’ll let that sink in. It’s bizarre, but why not. It’s a novel plot. Of course the prime minister won’t do it, he says so himself. But who would make such a demand, and why? That’s the question I expected to see answered. Not so.

The prime minister’s temperament quickly deteriorates. He assaults his closest advisor, calls her a “bitch.” Polls shift to show 86% of the population is in favor of him fucking a pig to save the princess. His staff starts to pressure him, stating it’s the only way to ensure her safety. The prime minister breaks down. Spoiler alert!

He fucks a pig.

Which is fine. Prime ministers have been known to do that. That’s not what gets to me. What gets to me is the strategical incoherence of giving into a kidnapper’s demand. There’s a reason why governments state they don’t negotiate with terrorists. If you give in to demands, you are demonstrating that kidnapping WORKS.

“Need something? Kidnap the princess! Last time the prime minister fucked a pig to get her back, clearly there’s not much he won’t do.” Princesses and all public figures immediately become targets.

Prime ministers would never make that dumb of a mistake. F, would not watch again.

Take My Money and Shut It, Spotify

I listen to music in phases. Pop songs for a week, queue classical music, then the regular Pink Floyd revival… This month’s phase was: “no music whatsoever,” and my premium Spotify account was going to waste. Bam, cancelled. What was I paying for anyway? It hit me a few weeks later.

The cycle had gone round and I was listening to my old playlists again. I’m bobbing my head getting into a flow as the first advertisement hits… “I can live with it,” I thought, so I tried for a few days. Here’s what I’ve concluded: Spotify, take my money. Anyone who gives me the choice between ads and paying, take my money now. Here’s why.

They’re Getting My Money Anyway

There’s a reason companies pay to run ads. They know they’ll make it back, and more, in increased sales. Those sales wouldn’t have happened otherwise. That’s money I wouldn’t have spent—but was convinced to through remarkable perseverance.

Ads sound like someone is doing me a favor by bringing amazing deals to my attention, but really, an ad is just a company’s way of asking for money. So in the case of Spotify, I can either give my money upfront, or get constantly asked to do so—with no end in sight.

“Why don’t you buy a new car? Look at this sound system, it’s better than yours. Come onnnnn, at least let me save you money on insurance! Not now? Fine, listen to this. I’ll be back in a few minutes.” No free service is worth being harassed.