We are looking at mainstream social media feeds such as Facebook, Twitter, Reddit to get good contents and news. Reject using them, and adopt RSS with a curated list of blogs we truly like.

The problem

The impact of social media on time and mood is something I had experienced many times in the past. When I was using mainstream social media, I was unawarely spending my time on poor quality content. I identified two reasons for that.

The first issue were algorithms. They showed me things I already knew and agreed with, while they were completely hiding controversial stuff and new things I would have loved.

The second reason was quantity. Too many posts and too much misinformation, hatred, and unjustified criticism on everything. People look either fake or really frustrated on social media. I rarely witnessed sane and interesting discussions rising from a post on a social media, let alone from a comment.

The solutions

Quit mainstream social media now. Delete your accounts. Get rid of them. This is the first, immediate, thing you must do. Since when I did it a year ago, quality of my time improved dramatically. If for some reasons you must keep your account active, just make sure you only log-in, do the stuff you need, and log-out.

Don’t ask an algorithm what to see. Just use your brain and your heart especially. Find and choose your own collection of websites, sources, blogs to periodically read. The trick is measuring out the quantity of sources. Choose them because you really like them, not only because you find them useful. Too many sources will be impossible to follow. Focus on quality instead and what matters to you.

Start adding blogs to your RSS reader as a hobby, and then see where this new habit leads you.

Mastodon and federated social media are an exception. They’re different because they’re slow, they won’t hide you content, and they let you fully customize stuff on the feed. They’re the best version of what social media can be.