I’ve gotten lazy in my old age, and find that Twitter is a good way to let others do my thinking for me. Those who think particularly profound thoughts get hearts as endorsements. Out of curiosity, I wrote a script that tallied my tweet “likes” and ranked the recipients.
In order of likes-received, here are my 10 favorite Twitter people from the past year:
Looks like my favorite tweets are 90% crypto-anarchist, 10% neoliberal. But who cares about me, let’s look at who Silicon Valley thought leaders are favoriting!
Elon Musk is always entertaining. He gets a lot of grief for the time he spends on Twitter, but it looks like his Twitter activity is largely related to work. @elonmusk‘s most ❤️ed accounts:
Here’s Twitter founder @jack’s top ten likes:
@pmarca used to be one of my favorite twitter personalities, until the PC police drove him off the platform. These days he still interacts using ❤️s. Marc Andreessen’s top ten:
The investigative journalists at The Outline already jumped on this case and identified Andreessen as a closet neo-Nazi.
— Eoin Jinglins ❄️☃️ (@EoinHiggins_) November 28, 2018
Why do we even use this feature? ❤️s are a good source of data for targeted ads, or for Twitter to rearrange your timeline in a way that confirms existing bias. There’s zero benefit conferred to the user, but we keep clicking it anyway. Maybe the Like button is just a digital version of the close-door button in an elevator: A meaningless form element that provides symmetry in the user interface and helps us feel like we’re doing something productive, while we slowly relinquish control to the machines, one button-press at a time.