The tweep life. Social media is an interesting place where you will find all kinds of people. From those trying to sell anything and everything, those faking intelligence to those camping there for emotional release, Twitter has them all. So while some of you ready yourselves to join Tweep Life, let’s paint you a picture.
Twitter has been described as the total sum of the world in 140 characters, now 280 characters. On here, people do not exist in religions, or races. They exist in newly evolved groups, perfectly woven from scratch. Here are some of the groups you will find on Twitter.
In an era of Saccos, influencers have formed one on Twitter. You may call them influencers or amplifiers. They specialise in trending hashtags. If you see a trending Ugandan hashtag, be certain that there are about 10 names responsible for hundreds of the tweets. All you have to tell them is how many tweets to produce per hour. They are up for sale to the highest bidder.
On Monday they will push a toothpaste brand, on Tuesday they will shout about Sustainable Development Goals, on Wednesday it will be about Fresh Kid’s concert. Then Thursday and Friday they will ask us to free Stella Nyanzi. And on Saturday and Sunday, they will push Hadassah Must Stay. In case you are wondering why the devil has become rare in Kampala, he is hiding among the Twitter influencers.
The trolls aka VAR
Trolls project a larger than life stature. They are always over-compensating for what they lack. They compensate for low confidence and self-esteem issues with arrogance. On Twitter, you will find the Ugandans who are amused by picking on the weaknesses of others. They are the video assistant referees. They edit tweets, they pick errors, they exist to find the imperfections of the human race. Despite their bully stunts, they are calm in real life and often shy away in public. But what would life be without the trolls?
The victim brigade
Although we have the trolls, we have another special class of people, aka the victims. These will exaggerate every experience that happens to them. It is one thing to be a victim, it is another thing to seek attention by playing victim all the time. These are people who are always selling the world onto their sad stories.
It is either someone is cheating on them, someone cheated them or they know someone who knows someone who cheated on someone. They are the queens and kings of sob stories. If you want to find the bedroom of depression, pass by their feed.
There used to be a time when the feminism movement was shattering glass walls. There used to be a time when feminism was beyond the signalling. Then came a special movement born out of Westeros that prided in quoting Audre Lorde, learning the lingua of feminism and all of a sudden they became the new age revolutionaries. That special groups lives and breeds on Twitter. Although they live for the ideals of feminism on Twitter, their real life actions do nothing but further the entrenchment of the patriarchy. Lest they call this toxic masculinity, we shall leave this group at that.
We call these the Facebook immigrants. They once lived on Facebook, then migrated to Twitter. Only to find out that Twitter came with a character limit. As such, they decided to extend everything they do to threads. They will have a thread about their first kiss, a thread about their first job, a thread about puppies. For some reason, they signal intelligence through threads. Call them the thought leaders, the experts.
We get it, everyone wants to be inspired, everyone wants a dose of motivation. But that does not give a right to some people to appoint themselves the Twitter pastors. They have a collection of motivational quotes that they keep splashing out everyday. If only they could walk the talk of their motivation. They tweet about people saving money yet will slide into DMs to ask for a bailout. Dude, can you act your tweets?
They are new on Twitter, they are basically finding their way out in this brave new world. They are learning the basics of tweet, retweet and the like. It is a cultural shock for them. As such, one day they are tweeting about politics, another day they just post a photo of their boyfriend. The world is confusing for them. But they have the resilience. Unfortunately they often run into trolls who give them a sour welcome. It is called the ordination phase. They go through the fire as eggs and get out as dragons ready to spit fire.
Most of these are lawyers. We ask that hell reserves a place for lawyers, Budonians and Smackists. They cannot help but try to signal a know-it-all attitude to everything. Pseudo-intellectual Twitter rests on the shoulders of people trying to post unpopular opinions. They want to speak with authority on every issue. They will dissect Uganda’s new bridge as though they are qualified civil engineers. They will be on hand to lecture everyone about the history of music.
In case you doubt, they will point you to a paper they have authored, better still, they will tell you about Antonio Gramsci. They have read Karl Marx, they have read military strategy, they have read political-economy. Although Pseudo-intellectual Twitter can feel like a university on wheels, it is also a bubble waiting to explode.
The cheerleaders/ fire fans
All they do is fan up the fires. Isn’t it interesting when the Twitter President takes on ambathada Sheilah Gathumba? Isn’t it lovely when Twitter Vice Prethident Mathias Themanda is out defending Nawangwe? In case you find it interesting, then you must love the job of the cheerleaders. Sometimes the best spot is to sit in the stands and watch a bullfight.
The anonymous Twitter aka the Bots
We don’t know their real names. We cannot put a face to their names. They are our Julian Assanges. Give every man a mask and all of a sudden truth will breed like a rabbit. Remember Patriot Anisha, the NRM fanatic who claimed to be a Rwandan belle?