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Selfie Decks - The Pod People Have Arrived on Twitter

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When Instagram first introduced algorithmic timelines, people were unhappy, and in a kind of protest/self-promotion tactic, some of them started forming 'pods' - groups of users liking and commenting on each other's posts to get them pushed up the rankings. It works, and you would think it would appeal more to businesses and influencers who rely on post performance to actually turn a profit, but in truth it's mainly bloggers who are using pods. Not as profitable perhaps, but still understandable.

Twitter also changed their timeline from chronological to algorithmic, prompting a similarly frosty response, and now a whole new version of pods has emerged in the form of 'selfie decks'. Just like Instagram pods, users group into decks and like/share each other's content to boost stats. There's a strict code of conduct in each deck, users have a quota of tweeting and liking that they have to meet for as long as they're part of the deck.

The key difference is this that most of the people using selfie decks don't have any legitimate motivation to get their names out there. Instead, as the name suggests, they're just giving themselves the best chance of broadcasting that snap they took on a boat in Majorca to a wider audience. If this sounds eerily familiar to anyone over the age of 23, let me hit you with a phrase that will chill you to your very soul: 'PC 4 PC'.

For the unfamiliar, PC 4 PC was a trend on MySpace which involved trading picture comments. Basically somebody would post that odd little acronym on the MySpace Bulletin Board (remember that?), prompting other people to comment on their photos in order to get a comment back. In so doing, they completely invalidated the entire point of commenting on a photo in the first place. I bring this up because it's almost exactly what people in selfie decks are doing, albeit with the vaguely more understandable aim of roping in more followers. Social media may have changed, but narcissism has not.

The other key difference is that PC 4 PC was a single use token, selfie decks are ongoing. Members have to continuously like and retweet the content of their peers, regardless of whether or not they have even the slightest bit of interest in it. That might make a certain amount of sense if all the members were posting anything other than pictures of themselves, but they aren't. Somehow I don't see this lasting too much longer.



Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. Follow him @Songbird_Callum

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Selfie Decks - The Pod People Have Arrived on Twitter Reviewed by Callum Davies on Thursday, May 11, 2017 Rating: 5

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