Where Have All the Good Tweets Gone?

Occasionally, I look back at my tweets. I don’t think this is exceptional or niche behavior—sometimes I want to get a link to a previous tweet, or I want to look at a picture I posted. This is normal, right? I’m not crazy, right? Right? Well, let’s get to the crazy. A week and a half ago, my new tweets stopped showing up.

I mostly use Twitter via Tweetbot 3 for iPhone, and view my list of tweets in the personal account tab. Here is what I see, and have seen for the past week and a half. On the left shows my profile with no tweets since Feb. 25, and on the right shows my timeline and some tweets I’d posted in the past hour.

Tweetbot 3 for iPhone

So what’s going on? It’s worth noting that the Tweetbot profile tab’s count of my tweets does update after each one, and that these tweets do seem to go out to the world in home timelines.

If I query the Twitter 1.1 API for my user timeline (which I assume is the same API call that apps use to populate this list), I can definitely see my new tweets, even with the since_id pramater set to the last ID shown by Tweetbot (trying to reproduce the request that a client would be making).

Twitter 1.1 API

Also, this is not an issue isolated to Tweetbot. I have reproduced similar behavior in every Twitter app I have tried, but the weird thing is that the last tweet shown is not universal (links are to screenshots of each app, dates are of last tweet shown):

I have, oddly enough, found one interface that shows my latest tweets—the Me view of Twitter 6.2.1 for iPhone, but even this interface is not consistent. On the left is the overview for the Me screen and shows all tweets, and on the right is the “full” list of tweets by me (found by tapping the 2,829 TWEETS button or the View more tweets button that is below the content shown in the screenshot) and only shows tweets up to February 23.

Twitter 6.2.1 for iPhone, Me tab

I’ve tried to think about what weird things I could have possibly done with Twitter—what could make me an edge case—to cause this situation. Here are a couple possibilities:

  1. Around January 1st, I changed my Twitter handle from @rubergly to @jeffinitelyjeff. Everything seems to have broken nearly 2 months later and was fine until then, so I don’t see how this could be the cause.

  2. On or around January 23rd, I was blocked by Louie Mantia. As I’m not a troll and try to have civilized and intelligent discourse with people I respect (like Louie) on Twitter, I consider this to be exceptional1, but I think it’s unlikely that all users that have ever been blocked are treated differently, and also don’t see how this could affect things a month later.

There is one possible explanation. This is my tweet that most commonly shows up as the last one (in Tweetbot, most Twitters, and most Twitterifics):

And this was Joe’s reply to that tweet:

I think it’s clear that Joe has cursed me to never pass Goe.

If you have any feedback or insight into what’s going on, or have experienced this issue yourself, I’d love to hear about it on Twitter. Or you can just click that link to see how the latest tweet is from February 21 or 23 depending what browser you’re using.

  1. I believe he blocked me because of a poorly phrased joke that I made in a reply. He was correcting the world about the plural of the word “Jedi”, and I tried playing off everyone’s shared hatred of the prequels and the observation that the existence of multiple Jedi is never really present in the original trilogy, and replied “no, the plural of Jedi is the prequels. stop talking about them”, and the last part on its own could easily be read as drivel telling him what he should or shouldn’t tweet about, which wasn’t my intention at all.