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Tuesday, May 5, 2009

All a-twitter

Yesterday I joined Twitter. If you don't know what that is, you must be an extraterrestrial so welcome to planet Earth.

I wasn't going to join yet another social utility website but curiosity prevailed--as a self-professed new media fanatic I had to check what all the rage is about. Now that I've seen it from inside, I still don't understand what is the added value of Twitter over Facebook (where I've been for a while now, reconnecting with a bunch of old friends and which I find useful, if you can ignore all the idiotic quizzes).

This is how Twitter's co-founder Biz Stone (what a name) described it to a Guardian journalist a few months ago:

The analogy there is that the Facebook status update is 'I'm headed to Boston' and then the whole time I'm in Boston, I'm Twittering that 'I'm getting doughnuts', 'I'm eating doughnuts', 'I'm on third street with doughnuts'. And then when you get back online, you'd say 'I'm back from Boston'. It's a different use case."
I read this and I went, huh? This is it? I don't think I want to bore my friends with this level of detail and I also probably don't need to know what is going on in every minute of their lives.

What do you think? If you are tweeting (and I know some of you do), I would like to hear what's the attraction for you--why do you do it?


julochka said...

i go in streaks. some days i tweet all day long and other days i forget to tweet at all. right now, i'm really sick of the spamming followers that are actually porn and/or dating site links. yucko. why they're targeting me, i'll never know, since i've never been to one of those sites in my life! twitter is pretty good about shutting those accounts down quickly, but you still get the emails about them following you and it's really annoying. i've probably had ten of those today alone. yuck!

but, it's really fun to have a convo back & forth with someone who's sitting in, say, zambia. :-)

i say give it a go for a little while, if you hate it or don't use it, then you know.

but here's a bit of info for you...BBC admitted on the day of that turkish airlines crash that they learned about it from twitter. and the first pictures both BBC and CNN had of the crash were from twitter. so it's pretty happening.

Delwyn said...


Delwyn said...


My newspaper said it had a 40% drop off rate...

Jelica said...

Julochka, there is no danger in me hating it, it's more probable that I will not use it so actively, thinking that I don't have so many smart things to say. I certainly need to explore it more before I give up.

Jelica said...

Delwyn, a friend of mine quoted the same statistics to me.

I wonder how people manage to keep up with all their social media stuff--what with Facebook, My Space, Flickr, Twitter, blogs etc. I would need a few more hours in a day!

B said...

I'm in Twitter but don't really get it. I keep hearing that it's a good marketing tool, so I guess if I had my own business, I'd find an use for it... right now, I don't check it or use it very often. I just don't have time for another social network.

Jelica said...

That's what I've been reading as well, B, especially on sites and blogs dedicated to nonprofit communications. I know that Oxfam GB is on twitter, for example, and some other charities, so I guess it is just another way for them to keep in touch with supporters. But, like you, I am a but short of time for all that--just reading other people's blogs is enough to keep me busy all day :)

Merisi said...

I am writing on comment.
I finished writing the comment.
Enjoy! :-)))

Jelica said...

That's hilarious, Merisi, but isn't that exactly what the co-founder of Twitter said it's all about? (Does he even realizes what kind of self goal he scored with his explanation?)