Wednesday, May 26, 2010

why i don't tweet

Every time NPR runs another story about Twitter, AK and I roll our eyes. At best, these stories are about how, say, Iranian students are organizing protests via Twitter. At worst, some old reporter caps his interview with some old rock star by asking, “Do you Tweet?” To which Old Rock Star either says, “Good lord, no” or, with a bit of ironic distance, “Yeah, all the kids are doing it,” and I guess we’re supposed to squeal at the adorable, hilarious mental picture of Old Rock Start pecking away at his 140 characters.

As far as I can tell, Twitter exists for the purpose of 1) marketing, 2) coordinating protests in countries under the thumb of oppressive regimes and 3) making reporters who are over fifty feel like they’re with-it. If you’re not a marketer, protester or reporter, you have no reason to be on Twitter. Even if you do have stuff to market (and, sigh, don’t we all), you’re only going to be hawking your stuff to people who are there to hawk their stuff. It’s like the garage sales my grandmother and great aunt used to have, where they’d set up adjacent tables and trade stuff back and forth.

Although, actually, that would work just fine. That’s grassroots capitalism at work. Twitter is more like if my grandmother and great aunt each shoved a bunch of crap onto the other one’s table and then shoved it back without even looking at it.

So that’s why I don’t Tweet. That and my obsessive nature, which dictates that if I were to Tweet, I’d be sure to let you know about every meal I ate and every thought I had. I mean, look how the blogging thing has turned out: five solid years of highly unnecessary posts. But I was just thinking about how I’ll probably break down and get a smart phone sooner rather than later, so the title of this post should be “why i don’t tweet (for now).”

But my point is the Twitter-obsessed reporters. My point is that THERE’S NOTHING TO SEE HERE, FOLKS. This is also The Onion’s point, thank god.


Claire said...

Fair 'nuf. Probably the coolest thing I do with twitter is stumble upon links to Amanda Palmer's various live webcasts. I watched her live in concert in ... Poland, I think it was, and another time in Glasgow. I've probably seen her perform live (from the comfort and volume control of home) more than any other musician at this point.

I also follow a lot of writers, and occasionally have the pleasure of interacting with them. I made Shonda Rhimes (creator/showrunner of Grey's Anatomy) laugh once- how awesome is that? And Jane Espenson (Buffy writer, Caprica showrunner) passed on a suggestion I had to make her website easier to search.

When I first started using twitter about 1 year ago, I was initially OCD about keeping up with it all, but once I let that go... like magic. If you find interesting people to follow & don't get obsessed with your # of followers, it can be entertaining and informative.

Cheryl said...

Fair 'nuf. But since I'm not convinced Shonda Rimes would find me funny, I'm sticking to the blogosphere.