Wednesday, March 19, 2008

What on earth is Twitter?

Over the last few days I've had a few invites to sign up to Twitter. I've heard about it obviously over the last year or so but each time I've looked at it I've failed to see the point. Why on earth would I want to tell everyone in the world what I'm doing at any point while I'm out and about. On the surface it's like texting on acid.

However my curiosity has got the better of me and I've taken the opinion that this is either the new "Emperors new clothes" or there is something there that I'm missing. So I've signed up...

I've enabled updates via instant messenger and via SMS. I've got a client on my PC to see my "river" of information. I've got a couple of followers and I'm following them back. And guess what.. I still don't see the attraction or the point.

So I've looked a bit further and I might finally be starting to see the light. An article here on Oh, Twitter states the following:

Twitter is simple to use, but difficult to explain.

Twitter is NOT just a place to send the boring details of your day out into the universe — unless you want it to be that, at least. - (Ah.. ok.  - Steve.)

Generally speaking, Twitter is:

  • A community
  • An immediate feedback system
  • A talent pool/resource
  • A support group

Twitter’s usefulness is easiest to illustrate by example:

  • Visiting a new city and wondering where to grab a bite to eat? Tweet! Get suggestions for places to go (and avoid) from locals who know the area without having to pore through (or pay for) Yelp or Zagat reviews.
  • Working on a website and can’t figure out what’s wrong with your HTML code? Tweet! You’ll often get a response in seconds pointing out your error.
  • Looking for a writer, graphic designer, or web site developer? Tweet! You’ll instantly get qualified leads and portfolios to choose from.
  • Want to share your latest blog post with the world? Tweet! Twitter is increasingly becoming a top source of traffic for new and pro bloggers alike.
  • Not sure how to upgrade the RAM in your computer? Tweet! You’ll instantly get trusted advice and instructional YouTube videos.
  • Wondering what the best green smoothie recipe is? Tweet! You’ll have five different recipes to try in five minutes.
  • Bored on a Thursday night and looking for someone to have a cup of coffee with? Tweet! Odds are someone else near you was looking for the exact same thing.
  • Having a bad day? Tweet! Someone’s listening.

OK, I'll bite and perseve with it.

And then if that doesn't help, there's this video to describe it all in plain English.

I've put my Twitter feed over on the right so you can see just what my contribution to this growing world consists of.

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