Like countless others in the social media universe, I've been using Twitter for years. When I first started using Twitter, my primary goal was to find the best client out there that fit the best with my needs. For me, I found that client to be TweetDeck. I have used it for years and have recommended it to plenty of people. Then... Twitter bought-out TweetDeck, and that is when the dark times began.
In late 2011, Twitter rolled out its new version of TweetDeck for Mac and PC - which came on the same day that Twitter released a new Web UI and a new app for iOS. One good thing about the new Tweetdeck is that it is native (meaning it's a regular app like Skype or any other software you download to your computer). Until late 2011, TweetDeck was an Adobe Air application, which was buggy at times to say the least. So, yeah, that's about all the good I can come up with.
When starting up the new TweetDeck, differences from the old app became immediately noticeable. The interface was different, customization abilities went missing and options had disappeared. The app had immediately fallen below the satisfaction level of the original - and now, shockingly, its competitors. There is nothing more frustrating as a technology user than when a developer takes a great piece of software and royally screws it up for no reason.
Welcome to TweetDeck.
In addition to my gripes above, there is much more that's not to love about the new TweetDeck. Old school Retweets are gone, as the automatically generated "RT" and the person’s name before their tweet has disappeared. You would think that a company like Twitter would realize why certain apps were successes, right? Not the case. Instead, they've taken away a classic feature to the dismay of thousands and thousands of users.
Moving on to more bad changes, we get to the lack of screen real estate. I am not a "Twitter hog" by any means, as I only usually use about three to four columns, but there are those out there who use many more. Twitter, via the new TweetDeck, has now made it a nuisance for these people. There is now a max of four columns on your screen with the fifth column displaying a huge arrow to scroll right and see the rest of your columns. Yes... an arrow. Really?
Another thing that made the old TweetDeck so cool was its ease of use. Not many clicks and boom, you got what you wanted. This changed as well. As previously mentioned, just to RT someone has now become a multi-click process. And how about easily adding or removing tweeps from lists? Forget about it.
For those social media "crossovers", the lack of Facebook, Foursquare, and LinkedIn support in the new TweetDeck is a major issue. Personally, for the most part, I'm very selective about posting to multiple platforms (as I have a future piece that talks about this a little more) - but you get my frustration.
As for where things stand now, I used the new TweetDeck for a few minutes and then went right back to the old version. I'm holding off as long as I can until I'm forced to move on, as I really did love old school TweetDeck. The constant reminder on my screen to upgrade and download TweetDeck (and subsequently ruin my current, older version) is starting to get tiresome. I am now looking at apps like Hootsuite for where I can call my new Twitter home and I'm sure I'll have to move on sometime in 2012. Way to go, Twitter....