Ok, I've been twittering for about a month now (Hi, my name is Randy, and I'm a twitterer...).

Twitter has recently caught it's second wind. It launched ages ago, and like most early adopters, I signed up right away. And quit. It just didn't make sense to me. It looked like blogging for boneheads, which, although I am one, I was already blogging...so I bailed.

I reengaged in the twittesphere when I realized that a number of really smart people I knew had embraced it and that I must be missing something. After 618 Twitter posts, I have the following observations.

1) Not all Twitter users are created equal. There are drone twitterers - computer generated accounts who follow 5,251 people and Twit jibberish. There are regular twitterers who might follow 50 and be followed by 50 people (not necessarily those they follow). And then there are The Twitterati. These are the rock stars of twittering who have 2,362,201 followers and follow no one, twittering where no man has twittered before. I'm in the middle catagory.

2) A good Twitter post makes me think, laugh or want to respond. Do not twitter "Eating toast now". Especially during a fast.

3) Twitter makes me a better writer. 140 characters is not much, people. I edit my Twitter posts far more closely than I do anything else, because I hate txt speak and abbrvtns. I'm a stickler for commas and like to use a period, even thought it uses a character space. I will concede the double space between sentences, although it pains me. The exercise has made me think about unnecessary words and how to get rid of them - and that can't be bad.

4) Twitter has yet to fully be utilized by organizations. A few are trying it - for instance, I posted a one liner about a Southwest flight and received a reply from Southwest almost immediately, because they have someone searching Twitter for chatter about them. It was impressive. Still, I think it's a powderkeg of opportunity to get the word out. Watch my account for some mad twittering in August, including a Live Twitter of TheCall DC from my perch as stage manager.

And that's what I'm thinking in my sacred space this morning.


Anonymous said...

Awesome, I some how pulled up an old post for your site from 5.07.2007 and commented on it! My G5 thought is was your front page. So that explains the random comment. Ha! Rock on! Twitter has taught me that I think in 140 characters or less all the time. - Richy

Anonymous said...

You shouldn’t feel bad about a single space between sentences – it’s the correct way.

Anonymous said...

I'm considering creating an app that gives somebody a 'twitter score' based on their number of tweets, number of followers, and number of followees. For instance, somebody with 5000 followees and 100 followers would have a ridiculously low twitter score, and wouldn't affect your twitter score much. I have 200 followers and 40 followees, but probably 100 of those followers are bots that themselves follow 5000 people, so those wouldn't affect my score as much as a normal, real user following me. Therefore my score would be something like a ratio of 100:40, i.e. a little larger than one. John Gruber, followed by thousands but following tens, would add HUGE twit-fu to anybody he does choose to follow.

Just for fun, but I think it could be cool.

Brad Brooks said...

Please, for the love of God, do NOT use a double space between sentences. That's an old throwback to secretaries typing on manual typewriters. Are you a writer or a typist?

And I think I speak for graphic designers everywhere when I say that seeing a text come in that I have to typeset that has double spaces between sentences makes me want to kill, especially if it's in Word.

Andrew Faden said...

elliottcable: That sounds like a great idea. It's actually pretty similar to the way Google's PageRank works as I understand it, but applied to people instead of web sites.

Jesse J. Anderson said...

I see several people already mentioned it but, please please PLEASE do not ever double space anywhere, ever.

It is just plain wrong, wrong, wrong.

Welcome to the the year 1998, er, 2008 where we use computers instead of typewriters, and we use single-spaces instead of double-spaces.