Trying Twitterific

[N]ot to worry, for the full Twitter experience on your Mac, visit Twitter on web.

I could not stop laughing in disgust when I read the email in which Twitter, a company known primarily for taking user experience and ruining it, announced that they were shuttering their Mac client. The idea that Twitter in a browser is in any way a palatable experience is horrifying, and the only explanation I can offer is that the entire Twitter UX team is comprised of unpaid interns.

As part of our ongoing effort to streamline our apps and provide a more consistent and up-to-date Twitter experience across platforms, we are no longer supporting the Twitter for Mac app.

To be fair, the official Mac app was horribly neglected, and just… a bad experience. It didn’t support the latest changes to the Twitter service (like 280 chars), it was a buggy mess when you tried to do simple things like scrolling, and it crashed at least once a week on me. It was a bad app, yet still infinitely more manageable than using a full-fledged web browser for something as miniature-by-design as Twitter. Enter Twitterrific.

The idea of paying a third party so that I can access a service so rampantly overrun by TERFs and nazis that I feel the need to maintain a private account never really made sense to me. But, unlike the other great UX nightmare, Facebook, I don’t hate the company and the service with every atom of my body. I guess I’m kind of a sucker for the shithole that is Twitter. So, I have paid for Twitterrific. And, it’s pretty good.

Twitter clients were once this sort of UI/UX playground, and while I don’t entirely think that’s a good thing, some genuinely positive user interaction experiences were born of it. Twitterrific (speaking only of the MacOS edition for this post) feels largely native, but still has enough of these playground interactions as to frustrate me. The biggest one is that threads (etc.) don’t expand naturally, they pop out in little impermanent window doodads, and if you want to ensure you don’t lose your place, you have to manually tear them off and turn them into windows.

There are some other little issues, like a lack of granular control over notification sounds, but all in all the thing is better than the official client has been for years. Mostly just in that it reliably updates, it knows how to scroll, and like any good MacOS app it does not freeze every other day. I’ve been using it since Twitter made their shitty announcement (mid-February), and it’s a solid product. I guess this post has been more rant than review, but the facts are simple: if you use a Mac and you use Twitter, your experience either has gone or will go to absolute shit. Unless you use a third-party Twitter client. And Twitterrific is a pretty good one.