Simon’s Backup Weblog

Twit, Twit, To What?

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on December 17, 2006

Looking at the current rash of social networking sites, Twitter seems quite interesting, as it’s just a tool for notifying your network of friends what you’re doing…

There are some interesting concepts that this fits into, the idea of copresence, or even the Maori idea of the whanau or extended family. Tools like Twitter are a new form of social glue that helps bring distributed intentional groups of people together, wherever they may be. I know I’m not unusual in having close friends many time zones away, that I see in the flesh maybe once or twice a year – and using tools like LJ to keep in touch with them and their lives. Twitter looks as though it could simplify part of that equation.

So how do you use Twitter? The site is as simple and as bare bones as possible – after all, it’s a tool for keeping in touch quickly, You just post up simple one line descriptions, using the Twitter web site, IM,or mobile phone – and notifications come back to you the same way. I suspect it could come in quite useful when we’re at CES next month…

You’ll find me there as (surprise surprise) sbisson.


11 Responses to 'Twit, Twit, To What?'

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  1. redbird said,

    Thanks for the pointer. I’ve grabbed the username Vicki (advantages of signing up early; that was taken already when I found LJ) and will see what uses I have for it.

  2. marypcb said,

    whatever you *think* you’re doing, all you can say you’re doing when you update Twitter is – you’re updating Twitter. self-referential time sinks of the Internet unite!

  3. whumpdotcom said,

    Oh, I must point Liz Henry at this. She’s described Twitter in terms of Integry.

  4. ramtops said,

    speaking as someone who is trying to get away from bloody computers, I won’t be on there at all.

  5. tanais said,

    I don’t get it. I’ve read and reread simon’s post but I don’t see what this does that a mobile phone, text or email don’t offer… I’m probably being dense…

  6. sbisson said,

    The main difference is the “broadcast” nature of Twitter – send the SMS once, have it delivered to several different people automatically…

    It’s cheaper, and quicker than having to send 10 or so texts.

  7. tanais said,

    …is that all?

  8. bibliofile said,

    I can see where it would be actually useful during big shows/conventions, yes. Other than that, it just surprises me (initially, though not on reflection) that people would be interested in microblogging. How long before someone uses it to do their master’s thesis in performance art, do you think?

  9. marypcb said,

    functionally, yes.

    if you’re in a groupmind of several people and you drift around and bump into each other, you might be able to co-ordinate it better. if i looked at whether other journalists were saying they were about to leave the office for a press conference I’d know who I’d see there that I already know. as opposed to – er, going to find out. I’m not a big fan of something that’s just one liners. add groups and location and pictures and it could be useful. or it could stay as 10 million answers to that fascinating question; what are you doing NOW?

  10. montemplar said,

    Sounds like a perfect tool.. for people with spare time. Sadly, not a situation I normally find myself in, mainly due to all the social networking I’m doing online, ironically enough…

  11. angelcityblues said,

    I just wanted to say thanks for explaining the twitter workaround. I’ve been using it and it works fine for me. 🙂

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