This story is over 5 years old.


Log Off

How to stay sane until it's over.
Image: Canadian Press

As a Canadian, I don't have to decide between electing a right-wing, pro-bank warhawk or Donald Trump on Tuesday. But I can't escape the anxiety of the choice on Twitter.

If only because Trump runs an irresistible highway pile-up of a Twitter account, the social network has played an outsize role in this election. And while Twitter provides an immense amount of real-time news and detailed analysis of every single goddamn thing that happens, it has the consistency of a diarrhea-filled sock.


Twitter is bad at politics is what I'm saying, and if you want to stay sane on Election Day, log off.

The main reason to do this is that Twitter's cavalcade of awful opinions will never stop. Consider, for example, the many expert-types who once confidently tweeted that there was simply no way that Donald Trump would secure the Republican nomination, or even run in the first place. When he did both, everybody seemed to take a moment to reflect but nobody really learned anything. Now, some media people say that Trump will win with the same confidence as before.

Read More: Election 2016 Belongs to the Twitter Bots

It's really stressful, and probably not all that helpful. This is because Twitter contains just a fraction of the voter base in a country where one-third of the population has no clue what Uber is. Still, corners of the platform are so combative that Twitter's also somehow Fight Club for political opinions. (It's Fight Club because it's terrible.)

Armies of pro-Trump trolls are the background noise of the Twitter universe, but—and who knows why this is, maybe a bit of algorithmic filtering and some tendencies to follow people who echo our own beliefs—it can feel like you and everybody you know hates Nickelback but somehow you can't go anywhere without hearing "Photograph" on the PA. It's all around, nobody can really grasp why, but you can't escape it.

You do not want this. Those who want to come out of the other side of this nightmare with a shred of sanity intact: just log off. Log off and pray.

Get six of our favorite Motherboard stories every day by signing up for our newsletter.