I usually hate Video on Twitter. Why is that? It took me some time to understand what bothers me so much.

I used to think that I read fast and video makes it hard to skip/accelerate things. That’s part of the reason, but not the whole problem. Why would it irk me so much?

Media diet and medium

  • On my laptop, my media diet is made of RSS, newsletters, stuff sent by friends.
  • On public transportation, I usually browse Twitter and load links in LinkBubble.
  • During the commute, including walking, and during some household chores, I listen to podcasts.

This is why videos on Twitter irk me so much: I’m in public transportation, with possibly no data, people can see over my shoulder, and so on.

I could just favorite or buffer it for later, but that’s one more step, for something that’ll clog my read list for possibly little value out of context.

A priori commitment

Now we’re getting to the root of the problem: when I see a video, I don’t know:

  • the value
    • but hey, that’s Twitter: short-lived jokes and wisdom gems
  • a GIF or a video? is sound important?
    • do I need to stop my podcast and activate the sound?
    • should I expect to get a laugh in 5s or to sit through 5+mn (300+s!)
  • when the valuable content starts
    • on desktop I try to send YouTube links with a ?t=1m42s when I point to a specific time

So, finding a video in my feed feels like a demand of my whole attention for an unknown duration and for unknown value. The last part is inherent to Twitter, but the first two feel way too much for me.