Sunday, May 03, 2009

What's the big deal with Twitter?

Okay, I’ve been signed up on Twitter for several weeks. I have a handful of followers and seven or eight folks I’m following.

I still can’t see what the big deal is.

The “tweets” I’m getting here seem like rejects from a Chinese fortune cookie factory.

Many of my unfollowed “followers” appear to have something to sell. A house, a vacation in the Bahamas, a dinette, a hair tint, a massage.

I’ve used my 140 characters to alert my followers that I’ve posted yet another issue of The Hillsdale News. The little on-line newspaper can be found here.

I’ve also invited followers to join me cleaning up litter in Hillsdale. Surprise, none showed up. Who can blame them? They have hair to tint and backs to rub.

I’ve experimented with “news bursts.” So-and-so in the neighborhood died, a new store is opening, etc. Frankly, none of these tweets is important if you perch in a far-away tree, as most of my followers do. It may not be important even if you roost on a branch in this one.

I’ve read about the guy who wrote “Arrested!” because he was, and a whole bunch of followers came to his assistance. “Freed!” he tweeted, because he thought they'd like to know.

I still can’t figure out how, in custody, he was allowed to keep his smart phone to text his admittedly brief message. Perhaps he did it before the cuffs were clamped on. As for me, I'd still be fumbling around in my "contacts" list.

Mastering my cellphone is still on my "to do" list.

I suppose I’m being too rough on Twitter. I could ask the same questions about blogging in general and The Red Electric in particular.

What’s the point? Don’t we all have better things to do?

On second thought, at least with a tweet, I’m done in 140 characters.

According to my word count program, this post is somewhere north of 1400 characters, ten tweets. I could have said it with one: “OK. I give. What’s the big deal with Twitter?”

Come to think of it, I’ll go to my Twitter site and post exactly that. I'll tweet you what I find out, if you "follow" me.

Do you?

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3 Comments:

OpenID Sweetness! said...

I Tweet but I don't get it either. In fact I found your website by searching for "what's the big deal with twitter" in Google.
But the thing that I don't get is there are other websites out there that do it better but aren't as popular simply because they don't have the bigwigs on there.
Seriously, when has a news anchor told you to check out the station's Plurk? When does a rock star promote their soup.io on their website? A few have migrated over to Tumblr. And these sites do it better, not requiring their users to utilize other sites like twitpic and twitgoo to post more dynamic content such as images and videos.

12:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also found this website by doing the exact same as Sweetness...I'm doing an article about Twitter for my school newspaper and I can't really write about something I don't understand...I don't see what the big deal is and I don't see how Twitter is any different than the "status" bar you can find on Myspace or the "what's on your mind" bar on Facebook...if you ask me, all the Myspace, Facebook, and Twitter stuff is probably a more sufficient way for the government to keep tabs on all of us!

1:30 PM  
Anonymous bradc said...

I did the same search as the last 2 guys. I hear about situations where it's great, like finding the best exit for a concert. But Facebook seems to suit my needs much better. I'm amazed twitter even exists still. Possibly it's better suited for phones than longer Facebook statuses.

7:23 AM  

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