In Memoriam: The Greatest Tweets of All Time
While Twitter is still functional and recognizable and before Elon Musk drives it totally into the ground, let us reminisce on our favorite moments.Entertainment
As I type these words, Twitter is still online and functional, but it likely won’t be for long.
A wildly narcissistic right-wing billionaire has bought the site, laid off half its staff, and driven roughly two-thirds of the remaining staff to quit. In a disingenuous bid to return “power to the people” and preserve “free speech” (that is: kneecap the news media, own the libs and help spread conspiracy theories), Elon Musk said he would remove verification badges from journalists and public figures and instead sell blue check marks for $8 a month. Impersonations almost immediately proliferated—a preview of what’s to come if the site manages to survive the loss of nearly all of its critical engineers. (As of this writing, the exact status of the “selling verification” plan remains up in the air, much like Twitter’s future generally.)
On Thursday night, the mood on the social media platform felt downright funereal, after Musk said he was locking down HQ until next week. Many journalists and activists (myself included) built much of our careers on Twitter and rely on it heavily for real-time breaking news and to just generally do our jobs. For all of our complaining about the “hell site” (which it certainly is at times, particularly for women), Twitter also made us laugh; it fostered relationships; it helped movements organize; it platformed smart, interesting, funny people who otherwise may never have had a big reach.
Before the site goes up in flames, or simply becomes unrecognizable and useless under Musk’s sociopathic vision, let us take a little walk down memory lane and remember all the best (sometimes funny, sometimes ridiculous, sometimes humiliating) tweets that kept us coming back over the past decade-and-a-half. (I’d set this slideshow to “Graduation (Friends Forever)” by Vitamin C if I could, but I can’t, so play the song yourself if you’d like to create the appropriate mood while scrolling through.)
These are in no particular order of greatness: