There are no bad tools, there is just bad usage
Published on Nov 29th, 2019
I will start with my experience with Quora. It is an online platform to ask questions and get answers. A simple Q&A website to share knowledge, they say. But in the beginning, every time I open it, I used to get recommendations like, “What is the one thing you have hidden for years but would share on quora using anonymity?” “What are your darkest secrets?” “What are you hiding from your parents/significant other?”
That kind of recommendations annoyed me. I’m not against them but they are not my pieces of interest. So, I used to close Quora every time I see it. The worst part is that Quora puts those recommendations at the top of the page. Whenever I open Quora, they are there, at the top. Looking for my attention. And it was followed by closing that tab.
Later I decided to share my programming knowledge to promote the Coder Bootcamp. So I searched programming questions and started answering them. Quora’s algorithms understood my activity and started showing more programming questions. I started to answer more and more.
Then this beautiful thing happened. The recommendation system picked up and started showing interesting programming questions. I liked them. I then followed people who shared their answers. More relevant recommendations came in.
Now I am reading a lot of interesting pieces in my field. And I am very happy to read, learn and expand my horizons.
There are no bad tools. There is just bad usage. I am not saying sharing personal experiences on the platform is bad. I am just saying you need not shame the tools just because it doesn’t cater to your needs.
Think of Facebook. It’s a great tool to connect and communicate. But the same tool is being used to abuse, shame, hate, humiliate, and target the vulnerable.
It’s up to us how to use a tool.