From the scuttleverse:
When did we lose the ~ as a personal designation? Where did these @ motherfuckers come from with their nonsense?
When they invented this protocol called “email” and in their infinite wisdom decided to make it irrevocably depend on the commercial DNS network, the format was user@host. The Twitter corporation decided that was a great idea, except that they wanted to force everyone to use their network instead of DNS. Effectively, Twitter replaced the proprietary, centralized DNS with their own proprietary, centralized name resolution, such that you don’t need a username, since your “host” is your username, and it only resolves on Twitter’s servers. And they paid a bunch of people to pretend like it was a good idea, as well as paying people to tell others how “everyone” is using Twitter, and now everyone uses @ as the personal designation. If there were a better character to indicate corporate obeisance, I can think of none better than @. But I mean it’s just a character so who cares. Twitter can fuck off. I’m just saying where I think those @ motherfuckers came from with their nonsense.