Social media started rising in popularity in the mid-2000s. In 2004, MySpace reached 1 million monthly active users. It is the first social media website to achieve this milestone. And since then, social media has become more and more popular. That has not ended until now, even when some controversies surround some platforms.
Several social media platforms have risen, and some of them became the giants we know today. Facebook, Twitter, and TikTok are some examples.
Perhaps, you hopped on Twitter when you were still an immature teen. And you posted some unpleasant things. At that time, you don’t think about it that much. You were living in the moment.
The thing is that social media has become an integral part of our daily lives now. Your social media profile is basically an extension of you. And so, what you tweet has consequences.
To paint a picture, employers may check your Twitter account to learn about your personality. If they find something they don’t like, that will hurt your chances of getting hired.
Would companies really put effort into checking your activities on social media? You can doubt that. But it actually happens, as writer Josh Greenblatt has revealed. He posted a screenshot of a message that told him he was not getting hired. That’s despite the employer admitting he has a lot of the skills they are looking for. Why? Because three years ago, he tweeted about wanting to set Whole Foods ablaze.
There are also some famous people whose careers got destroyed when netizens discovered some vulgar tweets they posted years ago. They got “canceled,” as you would say.
That could happen to you too. And perhaps, you are now in a panic.
Easy Way to Delete Old Tweets
One of the things you can do is make your account private. That’s not a foolproof plan, though. If you are not careful, tweets you are trying to hide could leak out.
So if hiding them is not enough, the best thing to do is to remove them completely. Finding these tweets and deleting them one by one would be a tedious task.
Unfortunately, Twitter does not have a tool that allows users to delete tweets in bulk. But luckily, other online tools give you that ability.
Below are the steps to delete the tweets you made in the past that could affect others’ perception of who you are now.
Download Your Twitter History
This step is not required, so if you want to, you can skip it. But if you want to see a copy of your Twitter account with you “being you,” you may want to do this.
If you download your Twitter archive, you will have a snapshot copy of your Twitter account today. The tweets you will be deleting later will be preserved in that archive.
To do this:
- Go to your Twitter settings.
- Select “Your Account.”
- Find “Download an archive of your data” and click that.
After that, you will have to verify your account. Once done, you will receive a message from Twitter. That will state that it can take up to 24 hours for Twitter to process your request.
Deleting Tweets Using Advanced Search
Suppose you know which tweets you want to delete. But you don’t have the energy and time to scroll back to, say, 2015. You can use Twitter’s Advanced Search feature to surface those posts.
Here is how you do it.
- Enter your keywords on the Twitter search bar and press Enter. For example, if you were Greenblatt, you would want to search for “Whole Foods” or “ablaze.”
- The results will show tweets that contain these keywords from any public account. It will also show accounts with those keywords on their handle. That’s not what you want to see.
- You will see the Search Filters section at the top right corner of your screen. Click on “Advanced Search.”
- Enter your keywords and hashtags in the “Words” section.
- Type your handle on “From these accounts” in the “Accounts” section.
- Enter the date when you posted the tweets in the “Dates” section. If they are from 2015, you can enter January 1, 2015 – December 31, 2015.
- Click “Search.”
- Please select the posts from the results you no longer want on your account and delete them.
Bulk Delete Tweets Using a Third-Party Service
What if you want to delete all the tweets you posted 10 years ago? You can still use the Advanced Search feature to surface them. However, deleting them one by one will take painstakingly long. For sure, you don’t want to sit there all day doing nothing but removing your past tweets.
Unfortunately, Twitter does not have a tool that will allow you to remove them all in one click. There are third-party services that will, though. Plenty of websites like these exist. And what’s best is that there are enough solid options that are free to use.
Paid services are still more secure, though. If you want that sense of security, you should opt for them. You have to spend money, yes, but it is worth it.
Delete Your Account
Perhaps you are ready to move on from your account and start a new one. Here’s the final push that you need. Please note that deleting your account is irreversible. All your tweets, replies, followers, and whatnots will forever be lost. So do it only if you are 100% certain that’s what you want to do.
To delete your account, go to your Twitter Settings. Scroll down to the very bottom, and then click “Deactivate My Account.” And there you go. You have eliminated the problem from the source. Just remember not to tweet things you will regret on your new Twitter account.
You Can’t Do Nothing – Twitter Is A Liability Across Time
There are already movies and TV shows that we simply couldn’t make these days due to social reasons, especially around the level of offensiveness and subjects covered via humor, wit, and jokes. We all know that as time goes on, there are certain things, subjects, and even terms that change across time through social evolution that can put the history of your own statements as potential career bombs and even marriage risks. If you have a Twitter account, you owe it to yourself and your family to routinely check your own history against the growing list of things that can ruin your life.
Every time you stop and think to yourself about some new term that you know you aren’t allowed to say, you should search your own Twitter history to make sure you don’t become a victim of cancel culture. Alternatively, if you are a brave defender of social justice and progress, you can find these culturally criminal acts and statements of yours and publicly share and post them. As you highlight your own mistakes, you can remind the world through your own sacrifice how we all change and how you no longer share these opinions or find these jokes funny. Sure, you might lose your job by publicly admitting your past racist comments, jokes, and opinions – but the odds are a wonderful person of color will take the job that you lose, and you will help make the world a better place.