Social media is a powerful force in today's world. We use it for everything from keeping up on the latest news to posting the address and phone number of people who dare to have opinions that differ from ours. Of course, that doesn't mean every social media account is important. A lot of them are mostly useless garbage. Which makes it all the more confounding when a seemingly pointless account somehow garners thousands or even millions of followers. We talk about a few examples of that on this week's Unpopular Opinion podcast ...
... where I'm joined by comics and fellow Cracked co-workers Teresa Lee and Alex Schmidt. I'm also talking about a few in this column here today. Let's get it!
Being legitimately depressed is big business on the internet. Almost as big as pretending you're depressed to get attention on the internet. No matter which of those two camps you belong to, @hopeless is the "Woe is me" Twitter account you've sought for the entirety of your miserable life.
What is it? Glad you asked, you mopey son of a bitch! Basically, @hopeless is like a factory that produces nothing but an endless stream of depressing words. There's no face. There's no identifiable personality at all. It's just a bot that tweets sad things for sad people. So, it should go without saying that the account has a massive following.
As of right now, more than 160,000 people hang on every word tweeted by this misery machine, which follows precisely two accounts back in return. One of them is called @sosadtoday, an account that's nearly identical to @hopeless, except it's run by an actual person with a book deal and a bitchin' Illuminati-esque avatar.
Big Brother is watching you bum everyone right the fuck out.
Correction: They did follow @sosadtoday, as recently as a few days ago when we talked about all this on the podcast. Apparently, that has changed now. @hopeless doesn't follow @sosadtoday anymore. I sincerely hope it wasn't something I said, but just in case, here's a tweet to express how this change makes me feel.
In either case, what these accounts produce looks like the inner monologue of your 14-year-old goth niece turned into a social media feed. No links, no images, no videos, just shit like this ...
Or maybe they read your tweets?
... all goddamn day long, and people can't get enough of it. Almost every tweet gets hundreds of retweets and likes, or whatever Twitter is calling them now.
Oh, and also, I'm sure it's just a coincidence, but in the days since that aforementioned podcast went live, @hopeless has added to their repertoire of downers by retweeting the depressing words of others. They even mixed it up a bit by retweeting a picture of Selena Gomez.
I stared at this for a long time trying to figure out what's so depressing about it.
Holy shit, what if @hopeless is Justin Bieber? All that talk about missing someone followed up with an out-of-nowhere pic of the Biebs' former love interest? That would make perfect sense and, to be honest, is most likely the exact explanation for what's going on here. It's a noble effort for sure, but one that I guarantee is doomed to fail. Why? Because if that "Sorry" song didn't bring her back ...
... nothing will. That was the motherfucking jam!
Since we're on the subject of huge music superstars, let's talk about @lovelymissJJ, a Twitter account that's as bizarre as it is jam-packed with useful information ... about Beyonce. Now, I understand there are plenty of sites and feeds that exist for no other reason than to keep you up to date on the comings and goings of your favorite celebrities, but @lovelymissJJ is different.
For starters, if her bio is to be believed, she's a 68-year-old grandmother. Right off the bat, this makes running a Twitter account dedicated to news the Beyhive can use a somewhat strange choice, but the weirdness doesn't stop there. See, it's not just that she provides information about Beyonce; it's that she provides shockingly accurate information about Beyonce.
Case in point: Way back in August, she tweeted all sorts of details about Beyonce's new album, which was still six months away from being released at that point. Here are a few examples:
Who are you???
Sure, some of those details could just as easily have been guesses, but even then, nailing five guesses in a row is how you win the lottery. If she merely guessed and came up with all of that, it would actually be more impressive than if she just had the information fed to her. I mean, that has to be what's happening, right? Either she has sources within the Beyonce camp or she's in that camp. None of that makes the fact that this person is posing as an elderly white woman any less strange. Oh, and did I mention that sometimes she'll just up and tweet shit like this out of the blue?
Yes, you and I both know those are just Ariana Grande lyrics, just like we know full well that old people sometimes have sex. Nevertheless, tweets like that are just one more reason why this is one of the most fascinating accounts to pop up on Twitter in years.
When it comes to weird Twitter accounts, @coffee_dad is a stone-cold legend. In fact, my Cracked colleague Jason Iannone wrote about him once before, but it was on a garbage website for monsters (I also used to write there), so you probably didn't see it. No worries, I'll just bite his rhymes (so to speak) for a few paragraphs here!
Anyway, back to @coffee_dad. As the name implies, he's a dad who likes coffee. A lot. So much so that a solid 98 percent of his tweets are just shit like this:
Don't even talk to me in the morning until I've read a bunch of tweets about coffee.
If you look closely, you'll note that almost every one of those seemingly pointless ramblings has over 1,000 retweets each. Can all of that activity be chalked up to his massive following of 161,000 coffee fanatics? Maybe, but it's way more likely that people are hanging out for those occasional moments when the coffee talk ends and this begins:
Whoa, someone hasn't had their coffee yet!
That's right, from time to time he breaks up the cafe monotony with a tweet or two about his dead kid. Here, bask in that particular strain of weirdness again.
Is any of this real? The general consensus seems to be that it's not, seeing as how this account pops up on lists of the best parody accounts on Twitter constantly. So, rest easy knowing this isn't really a dad grieving over the untimely death of his son; it's just a dude pretending to grieve over the untimely death of his son. That's what makes it funny!
Holy shit Twitter is a strange place sometimes.
Are you working on a novel? Probably not, but damn if it's not a thing people love to brag about doing. If you don't believe me, then by all means please check out the Twitter account @WrknOnMyNovel. What is it? Well, it's exactly what it sounds like ... a bunch of tweets about working on a novel.
Were you waiting for me to add a little more detail? Like how @coffee_dad is about coffee but also death by vehicle? If so, keep waiting, because this shit is literally just tweets about working on novels. Even better, they aren't original tweets covering all of the ins and outs that come with conceiving and writing a novel. Rather, this account just retweets anyone who decides to tell the world they're working on a novel. I know, you're absolutely drenched with anticipation wondering what I mean. Here are a few examples:
You might recognize them as being exactly what I just described.
That's it. Just a collection of tweets from randos telling the world that this is the year they'll finally do some work on that novel. It would be pretty disheartening if this account had hundreds of thousands of followers like some of the others on this list. After all, it's not like the person running it is doing any work of their own. Instead they're just waiting around for people to say they're working on a novel and then retweeting it.
That said, before you get too comfortable with the idea that an account like this could never amount to anything more than a reason to laugh at the uselessness of Twitter, there's something else you should know about @WrknOnMyNovel. It's a book now.
Oh fuck the world!
Before you ask, it's definitely not an in-depth psychological profile of the types of people who tweet about working on novels without ever following through. No, it's just all those retweets, except in book form. So, if you're one of those people who've been toiling over that literary masterpiece for years now, marinate on the idea that you could just as easily have pulled up your Twitter account, hit the print button, and called it a day.
#1. Pretty Much Any Disgraced Former Major League Baseball Player
Baseball as a sport might be short on action, but once their playing days are over, no one brings the crazy on Twitter nearly as effectively as a former MLBer. That's especially true if the player in question has a shady past of some sort.
Take Jose Canseco, for example. He was a top-notch power hitter in his day but eventually fell out of favor with the league after exposing the rampant steroid abuse in baseball in a book that I still have trouble believing he managed to write all by himself.
You'll understand what I mean when you see his tweets.
Since then, he's alternated between being considered a hero for breaking the steroid scandal and a walking punchline for damn near everything else he does in life. His Twitter account definitely counts toward the latter of those two achievements. Here's a fun example:
This is a home run of insanity.
I honestly don't even know where to begin with that tweet, so in lieu of trying to wrap my head around it, instead let's look at two more batshit insane tweets Canseco sent just mere goddamn days prior to the one above.
You have no idea what kind of money I would pay to see those calculations. There are few things in this world I want as badly right now.
Another fantastic follow on social media is former MLB legend Lenny Dykstra. His post-baseball life took such a dive he eventually ended up in prison. He's out now, though, and hitting the lecture circuit to tell his tale to the world. Naturally, most of his tweets at the moment are meant to promote his upcoming shows. However, if you dig deep enough into the archives (like maybe a week) you'll find a goldmine of batshit insanity. Like this!
This is going on your credit report, Rourke!
Granted, he doesn't have the half-a-million-strong following that Canseco has, but with enough crazy shit like what's posted above, he'll get there. If nothing else, he's apparently hoping the two of them can team up to tell their stories on the road.
As you can clearly decipher from this tweet.
On second thought, I take what I said earlier right the hell back. There's nothing I'd want more badly right now than to see these two speaking in public together. If it turns out even sort of like their social media posting history, it would be more thrilling than any professional sporting event could ever be.
For more from Adam, check out 5 Ways The U.S. Is Awful (But Other Countries Are Way Worse) and 5 Insane Music Collaborations (That Almost Happened).