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Twitter Bait Posting Is Just a Desperate Cry for (Any) Attention

The advent of social media has transformed the way we communicate, interact, and express ourselves. These platforms, originally intended as tools for connection, often become battlegrounds of conflicting ideologies and serve as outlets for individuals seeking attention, validation, or a reaction from their audience. One of the most prevalent tactics employed in this digital landscape is what is commonly known as 'twitter bait posting.' A prime example of this can be seen in a recent tweet posted by @tradfeminine, a clear case study in the psychology of bait posting.


Twitter bait posting image
Folks waiting in line for the midnight launch of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom (TotK)

Twitter bait posting, to those unfamiliar with the term, is the act of sharing provocative content online with the sole purpose of eliciting a response. This can take the form of controversial statements, hot takes, or inflammatory opinions. The content isn't always representative of the poster's actual beliefs, but it's almost always designed to shock, offend, or provoke.



Recently, @tradfeminine made a tweet that perfectly exemplified bait posting. In it, she took aim at a line of people waiting outside a GameStop for the release of the much-anticipated video game, "The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom." Instead of quietly moving along with her day, she chose to snap a photo, post it on Twitter, and condemn those in line, stating that gaming is a waste of time and suggesting they should instead go to the gym, work on a business, or read.



In this scenario, it's important to understand that the intent isn't to engage in a meaningful conversation about the value of gaming or the benefits of physical fitness, entrepreneurial ventures, or reading. The post's primary goal is to generate attention, interaction, and validation – likes, retweets, comments, and shares. The more controversy, the more attention it receives. It's a cheap and easy tactic, exploiting societal stereotypes and biases to provoke outrage and elicit a response.


Ironically, the person posting such content is often not ignorant but rather desperate for attention. They may feel unheard, unnoticed, or unappreciated in their daily lives, seeking to fill the void with the perceived validation that comes from social media engagement. It's a cry for help echoing in the digital abyss, a misguided attempt at gaining recognition and influence.


Twitter bait post tweet
Screen cap for the inevitable tweet-bait post deletion

Unfortunately, we often fall for these bait posts, feeding right into the poster's plan. We engage, we argue, we retaliate with our own posts, further fueling the fire and giving the bait poster exactly what they want – attention. It's a vicious cycle that only perpetuates the problem.



The solution, as difficult as it may be, is to resist the temptation to engage. Ignoring bait posts and focusing on content that genuinely interests us or sparks meaningful conversations is the key to a healthier social media experience. For many, that might mean turning off Twitter and turning on their game console, immersing themselves in the incredible world of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.


After all... enjoyment is subjective, and we should all strive to find happiness in our chosen pastimes, free from judgment and bait posts. Bait posting is a pervasive issue on social media platforms, often employed by individuals seeking attention and validation. Recognizing these posts for what they are and choosing not to engage can help us navigate the digital landscape more effectively and contribute to a healthier, more constructive online environment.


~Smash

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