Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Conscientiously Objecting to Twitter

Since many of my peers are jumping onboard, I’ll offer a contrarian’s opinion and my rant about Twitter. Someone asked me recently if they could follow me on Twitter and my response was an emphatic No! Admittedly, I’ve checked on Twitter to see what individuals are up to – or even last week, while at, I navigated through the event links leading to Twitter to check the buzz about the event. But I can’t say that any of these experiences has provided any real value for me. Sure, Twittering your way out of an Egyptian jail is a good trick, but I’ve managed to stay out of the pokey thus far just fine without Twitter.

Even my vanity (as a now-Forrester analyst) does not predispose me to presume that anyone cares one iota what I have to Tweet about. If anyone’s really interested, they can visit my blogs here or here and read a full text version of my thoughts rather than the truncated 140 character set. If they’re actually one of my “friends” they can check on my Facebook page that’s infrequently updated with status alerts. Or better yet, when someone really needs to know that I’ve arrived safely on the plane, then I actually call my wife and tell her. Beyond that, I just can’t fathom what’s so important that anyone needs to spend their time waxing poetic in microblog format.

Yes, this is directed @you, so Twitterers, please enlighten me on the value and I’ll keep on open mind.


Kevin said...

I hear you and you seem like a pretty smart guy. It seems to me that you have more to say than just together paragraphs of analysis every now and then. I'm sure you have useful stuff to share every day with those of us who may care. By limiting your yourself to blogs or Facebook for social interaction, I think you've narrowed your audience . I use Facebook but for mostly personal interactions; Twitter is so much more than that. Yes, I Twitter personal things...I think it makes me more personable and gives a broader range of understanding who I am. But I'm able to hear and think about specific business content because of the people I follow. I can't imagine Facebook being a place for this content.

Twitter has in so many ways replaced e-mail I used to send and has the flexibility of instant messaging a private conversation if someone cares to follow me. Even though I'm 100% introverted, I step out into Twitter daily, comment on my day or someone else's idea and get heard. Longer posts (like this one) have taken too much time right now for me to construct.

Additionally, I've had a chance to interact with some of my favorites in the tech community like John C. Dvorak and made business contacts in other states quite easily. I also find my need for RSS decreasing as tweets from news sources arrive in the stream.

I would commend Michael Hyatt's, CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers and fellow Twitterer, article on 12 Reasons to Start Twittering as a place to think about the value Twitter could bring.

Just my thoughts.

John Lovett said...

Kevin - your comments are appreciated and duly noted! However, I'm still unconvinced. Your impetus for Twittering as well as that of people like Michael Hyatt is helping to illuminate the benefits, so thanks for sharing.

As I said, I'm ranting with an open mind.