No Such Thing as Too Much Information
The adventures of Diddy, dispatches from Anderson Cooper, a real-time account of Erykah Badu’s childbirth and other useless information you can learn on Twitter.
The useless information you can learn on Twitter.
These days, everyone from rappers to senators have a Twitter profile. Even dead celebrities have made their way to Twitter. I’m not entirely sure how 2Pac or Aaliyah discovered the site from beyond, but I’m happy to read about them. At least impersonating users like notbillclinton are more upfront.
Twitter is, of course, the microblogging service that allows users to send and read “tweets”—posts of up to 140 characters. Tweets are found on the user’s profile page and delivered to users who “follow them” by signing up to receive updates.
Besides being the next frontier in online procrastination, what is the point of Twitter?
Who knows? And honestly, if I thought about that for too long it would get in the way of my Twittering.
Twitter is a welcome refuge from all of the social networking sites that have become as relevant as a TLC cassette single. Nowadays if I view too many MySpace profiles, I feel compelled to spray my screen with disinfectant. And it seems that every branch of my family tree has found me on Facebook.
Some have branded Twitter as yet another way for narcissistic people to rant about themselves. Others look to it as merely another easy way to connect with people. Both are true. Self-indulgent people will seek out any outlet that gives them a public forum to talk about themselves. If those sorts of people bother you, definitely don’t follow Diddy.
But if you can get past the narcissism, you may just find yourself learning interesting news about the mogul, like his penchant for exclamation points and the phrase “Let’s go people!” In fact you can find out things you never thought you’d know—or care about—from lots of stars. Follow Erykah Badu, and you can find out how she reacts to wackos—she recently updated her followers about a stalker who had just been arrested in front of her house.
Ms. Badu and Jay Electronica also gave a blow-by-blow account of the birth of their new child, including how many centimeters the singer was dilated. Where else can you get that type of scoop, straight from the source in 140 characters or less?
From February 2008 to February 2009, Twitter experienced a 1,382 percent growth rate. Members of the press worry how the highly popular site will make money as it’s still without a business model, but, hey, that’s not our problem. Yet.
With such rapid growth, speculation is running rampant on how effective Twitter can be for those who actually want to tweet about something of substance. Health experts are wondering whether or not they can use Twitter to predict flu pandemics, in addition to tracing earthquakes and forest fires.
I don’t know about everyone else, but if I’m online when the ground starts dancing or a nearby forest bursts into flames, I’m logging the hell off and sending a mental tweet to God, not updating my followers. Speaking of God, whoever is Twittering as the creator might as well douse his or her drawers with gasoline, because we know where they are headed. Can you tweet from hell? Hmm?
For all of those rushing to Twitter, just be smart. These are tough times, and it’s not the time to be getting fired over something you wrote on Twitter. If you’re going talk noise about your employer, lock your updates.
Other than that, tweet away. C’mon, people are offering to pay you to follow them. And before you throw in the towel on the site, give it some time. That is, until 15 minutes from now, when the next thing comes along.