Viva la Revolution!

Granted, Twitter is noisy, overwhelming, confusing, and difficult to step into. It’s also incredibly vital, and potentially bottomless. I’m still experiencing regular epiphanies about business, collaboration, art and humanness. Half the fun is that I’m doing it together with others. It’s the biggest team effort I’ve ever seen.

Without further ado, here are the six:


1. …is fast

Twitter communities had spread the US Airways Hudson River story an hour before most of the news channels (Wall Street Journal sent out an alert within 25 minutes—good for them), and smart reporters knew to tap Twitter for sources, finding witnesses and the first photo (shot by an iPhone from a rescue ferry).

Some call it Citizen Journalism. I call it Communication Freedom.

2. …is uncensorable

Something that fast is virtually uncensorable. Unless I am one day caught with my hand in some political cookie jar, I’m going to continue to like it that way. This is a good time to re-watch Johnny Mnemonic (just fast-forward past the goofy Keanu Reeves monologue).

Another perspective: Sure, Big Media is slanted. So are you. Now all our slants have equal voice.

3. …is a “now” medium

There is no “catch up” or “make up” or “keep up”. In the twenty-first century and in Twitter, there is only now. You’ve got to sleep sometime, and you’re going to miss stuff. Read back a little, but as Mack Collier reminded me when I panicked over following 70 Twitterers (to date, he’s following 1,833), “I never try to go back and read missed tweets, there’s just no way to catch up.”

This is a good thing, because it keeps your attention focused forward (this is also probably a good place to recommend TweetDeck again).

4. …is super malleable

Like the rest of the web, Twitter is what you make it. It’s not done being born, and probably (hopefully) never will be.

People ask, “What do you do with Twitter?” Now that I’m a whole month old, I’d day: Start by listening. Complete your profile, then find people you want to listen to, and follow them. What you do next is up to you.

5. …invites new ways of thinking

If you think like you’ve always thought, the benefits of a this untethered tool will be limited. If you try out new perspectives, the benefits will most certainly expand. Find inspiration from your regular sources, try my recommended Five Favorite Follows on Twitter (another five coming soon). I also highly recommend hanging out with a child or teen for a bit.

6. …invites new ways of relating

I’m not really sure what this means yet. I just know I’m listening differently, sharing thoughts differently—sometimes with people I never expected to engage. I’m not a particularly public person, so I’m having to come to terms with the harrowing transparency of this and other social media tools. Still, I love finding people who post inspired, sparkly thoughts, and I love when they expand on one of mine. I guess you could say it’s about learning to participate in an ever-larger conversation.


Did you find this page through an online course link? Thanks for stopping by and having a read! Please drop me a line on Twitter (of course!) to let me know whether this post was helpful, and how I can help you find what you’re looking for. More interesting folks to follow? Better ways to manage the noise? Click here to go to my Twitter profile.

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4 Responses to 6 Things I Love About Twitter

  1. Penina says:

    MurielOK: Have you seen @twirledview? He’s tweeting 140-character short stories! Very cool. My writing has definitely benefited, as has my ability to edit myself with my 10-year-old 😉

    Bakari: Thanks for taking a look at these thoughts! I hope you’re finding inspiration and insight on your Twitter journey.

    Michael: Thanks for your encouraging comment. Was just looking over this post and wishing I had made it clearer. Haha! As for Twitter, I’m not so intrigued by its popularity as I am with its *impact*.

  2. Really enjoy(ed) your beautiful, clear way of expressing yourself. I’m pretty new to Twitter, about 2-300 updates. You have pointed out the value of this weird new medium…it takes some thought to understand its popularity. Thanks for the clarity!

  3. Bakari says:

    Nice interpretation. I have three tweets (I guess that’s the right term) under my belt and look forward to seeing how I can put it to use.

  4. MurielOK says:

    Nicely put. I have 943 Twits under my belt. I’ve tried to get other people to try it but I have convince very few. For me it brings out the poet. You learn to cut out unessential. Some twitters have beguiling style while others are interesting as stair treads. Yours I like for the quality links you direct your reader to.

Set your Twitter account name in your settings to use the TwitterBar Section.