My Thoughts on Twitter

Some of you may have noticed a lack of new blog posts on the site. It seems that I just don’t always have the amount of content worth posting here. Twitter is the perfect micro-blogging tool. Anything too short to put on the blog can be condensed into 140 character Tweets (the word is apparently pending copyrighting).

I can see where Twitter is off-putting to some people and just sounds like some sort of new trend, and it is by all means. Who decided that all trends are bad things?  It’s not causing any harm, (though literary purists may disagree). In fact, it almost makes the world feel a little bit smaller. I use it for a variety of reasons. tweeterI use it as a news source (@BreakingNews), a social medium, a way to share links, learn about special local events (@BostonTweet), keep tabs on bands (@thesonicyouth) and other famous people I find interesting (@Real_Ron_Artest), keep up with professional communities (@UXBooth), and stay up to date on software projects that I’m interested in (@songbirdteam); all the while consuming very little time and attention because of the 140 character constraint.

So what if everyone’s doing it? That only makes it more fun and engaging. It’s like saying I’m not going to that party, concert, sports event because other people will be there. It’s not like they are gathering to cause problems. People gather because it’s fun and different.  If you surround yourself with others who share simlar interests, then it’s nothing more than the completely normal human urge(/need) to be social (virtual or real.)

This brings me to my next question. How best to evangelize Twitter to those who just don’t get it? It’s really one of those things that you need to dive in to headfirst. Facebook was hard to explain when it came out. People have long since adopted, and have left it for dead. Not to say that this won’t happen in the case of Twitter, but I find that the early adopters really do get the best of it rather than sinking with the ship. Those who got on Facebook during its infancy, when it was for college students only know exactly what I’m talking about.

Twitter has a stigma with my friends of falling in with that sexy Apple trend. “It’s just one of those things you do when you own an iPhone and sit in coffee shops all day with your macbook.”

I have yet to find an answer to the question. I hope that in time, I won’t be seen as an ironic social pariah in my group of friends for adopting Twitter. @mikealt

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