Two big events have just gone down in the social media world. Firstly, a woman decided to live tweet her entire labour (twitpics included), and secondly – in what may or may not be a coincidence – Twitter introduced a new feature: the mute button. And with the World Cup starting this week, and the prospect of endless football tweets, we reckon the timing couldn't be better.
A few third-party Apps have offered this for a while, but this is the first time Twitter themselves have given users the chance to ‘silence’ someone they follow. All you have to do is go to the user’s profile, click on the cog icon, and select ‘mute’.
Those gushy tweets your friend from school keeps posting about her boyfriend? Gone. The Game Of Thrones spoilers from your colleague who is three weeks ahead? Vanished. You can mute people for a few days – or forever. The best bit? They’ll have no idea you’ve done it.
Of course, if you find someone annoying, you could just unfollow them completely – but we all know it’s not as easy as that. Your boss’ smug holiday tweets might be annoying, but un-following might make things pretty awkward at that next appraisal.
As someone who has been employing the ‘turn retweets off’ function for some time (no-one needs to know that a complete stranger likes your new haircut, nice as that is for you), I’ve already got a few people on standby to mute. Though, of course, you might be thinking exactly the same about me.