It’s likely that when you were a child (or in my case at 24 years old) your mother wished there was a mute button on you. And even though I’m sure that will be a reality some day, the days of “a human muter” isn’t here yet. So what’s the next best thing? How about the ability to mute people on quite possibly their most obnoxious medium? No, I’m not talking about shutting up the Real Housewives of Orange County on your TV. I’m talking aboutTwitter!
The newly released “mute” function on Twitter allows you to hide users from your timeline but still follow them. Why would you want to do this? Because we all have our annoying moments and we shouldn’t be punished in such a harsh manner with an unfollow. I mean, you saw the pandemonium caused by Solange unfollowing Beyoncé on Instagram didn’t you?! If only she had a mute function … and a little less to drink … and had taken the stairs instead of the elevator with Jay-Z this could have been avoided. If Solange muted the Queen Bey, she could have cooled down a bit and unmuted her sister when she felt she was ready to see Bey’s updates and pics of her and Jay-Z again.
When you mute a user on Twitter, their tweets and retweets will no longer show up in your timeline but you will still receive notifications. So, if Aunt Cathy just won’t stop tweeting her every thought (because she’s retired and what else is she supposed to do), you can silence her without her ever knowing. But when Aunt C tweets at you to ask if you can come over and change the kitty litter, you’ll be all over it like white on rice because you’re still receiving notifications when she mentions you.
If down the road you she becomes more bearable because she picked up knitting and toned down the amount she’s tweeting, you can unmute her to see the latest cat sweater she knitted on your timeline.
The new mute feature for personal use can be used to “clean up” your timeline without hurting the feelings of those you don’t actually want to unfollow. Although personal and brand social use isn’t typically the same – this time it is. If you’re a brand following that politician or brand who keeps telling you they “posted a picture to Facebook” or the blogger who typically has good content but is really laying into this pizza shop for the eyelash he found on his slice today, you can easily mute them without having to unfollow them and essentially saying they’ve lost your social support.
So what are you waiting for? Kim Kardhasian, Kanye West and almost every single Real Housewife ever is calling your name … they want to be muted!