Adam Isacson

Defense, security, borders, migration, and human rights in Latin America and the United States. May not reflect my employer’s consensus view.

Admin Updates

E-mail updates are back

After an inexcusably long time, I’ve produced a “weekly” e-mail about stuff I’ve been working on, for those who’ve signed up to receive them. Resuming these was delayed by the collapse of the service I was using to send them, but that’s no excuse: it’s been on my to-do list since January (yes, I’ve been clicking “postpone 7 days” every week since January, which is pathetic).

This one has links or excerpts from the Border Update, some charts reflecting new data about migration, a couple of brief analyses about Colombia, some news links, a list of upcoming events, and just a few funny posts from others.

If you visit this site a lot, you probably don’t need an e-mail, too. But if you’d like to get more-or-less regular e-mail updates, scroll to the bottom of this page or click here.

Where I’m Posting These Days (Not Twitter)

My Twitter account is now dormant. It’s not fun walking away from a platform where more than 16,000 people follow you. But remaining on that platform is even less fun, and no longer defensible.

The thought process behind my decision to leave is in the table at the bottom of this post. From now on, I’ll still check Twitter for news that I might not see elsewhere, mainly the accounts on a private “news posters” list that I maintain. But I don’t plan to post content, or to like or retweet content that I see.

I’m still posting lots of things, though. I’m just doing it elsewhere.

Here’s where you can find me.

  • This site, which I’ll be improving over the coming months.
  • At Mastodon, I post very often on a micro-small instance that I pay for myself (using
  • On Threads, where I’m getting into the habit of sharing things, but so far, with little original content that can’t be found elsewhere:
  • On, again with very little original content unavailable elsewhere:
  • On Tumblr, where I’ve been at for many years. That’s mostly reposts of things I’ve put here.
  • On Bluesky, where I’m infrequently posting what passes for humor, little of it work-related:
  • On Medium, where I’ll occasionally share longer-form things that usually appear here first:
  • At WOLA’s web page, where links to recent work are at the bottom of this page, under “Adam’s Work.”
  • WOLA’s Border Oversight page also has constantly updated sections documenting abuses, sharing infographics, and linking to reports.

I’m trying to do it as much as possible on platforms I own, and copying it elsewhere. (What the IndieWeb folks call POSSE, “Publish [on your] Own Site, Syndicate Elsewhere.”) At those “elsewhere” platforms, I’m still figuring out what makes them different, if anything.

I’ve also been posting a bunch of shorter videos over the past several weeks. I’m sharing them at some experimental accounts for video content:

Then there are some platforms I’m neglecting but where I at least try to “keep the lights on” from time to time:

Why leave Twitter?

Reasons to stay Reasons to go
  • I have a good follower count that includes a lot of people who I’d want to read and be aware of my work.
  • No other platform has anywhere near the same follower count or view count for most of my posts.
  • Journalists, government officials, and NGO colleagues do continue to use it. While this is declining, reporters will still often get in touch because they saw a tweet.
  • Some argument along the lines of “we can’t let the bad billionaire win, we need to protect this space.” (This particular train may have left the station by now.)
  • Elon Musk’s promotion of abhorrent views is intolerable. The “ick factor” is off the charts. What am I contributing content to here? I should’ve gone when he was attacking trans people, and I’m sorry for staying. Attacking the Anti-Defamation League is the final straw for me.
  • Elon Musk’s treatment of people who work for the company he purchased is vile.
  • Probably because I don’t pay $8 per month, the number of people who see my tweets has declined sharply. I have 16,900 followers but tweets routinely get less than 1,000 views. Why stay when you’re being throttled?
  • I don’t own or control my space at Twitter, which makes it less worth my time.
  • Barriers to third-party API access have made Twitter much less useful. For work-related activity, shutting off RSS access made Twitter a lot less useful.
  • It’s just not “cool,” you know? I’m far from the coolest person in the world, but I like to spend my scarce time in places that have that ineffable quality. And Twitter today is the opposite of that. Not cool at all.

Video for September 1, 2023 WOLA Border Update

This makes four weeks in a row that I’ve tried using my new office space at “renovated WOLA” to make quick little mobile-friendly promo videos for things we’ve published. This is the first one with the teleprompter setup that I’ve jury-rigged: a fast overview of the latest Weekly Border Update.

These are “experimenting in public,” figuring out the production, the hardware, and the software as I go. They’ve performed modestly on Twitter and invisibly on Mastodon, but reasonably well on TikTok (where they reliably attract obnoxious far-right commenters) and on Instagram.

Entire Collection of Border Infographics is Updated

As you can tell from the last few posts here, I’ve been updating my collection of border and migration infographics (a fancy word for “charts”). I’m done now.

Those all live in a section at WOLA’s Border Oversight website. There, they’re organized by category and by when they were last updated. For nearly all of them, I’ve now added a link to a Google spreadsheet with the underlying data.

Or you can just download them as a 98-page PDF document, which also lives at the shortcut

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.