Thursday, August 28, 2008

Speeches and Twitter

Wired had an article called, "Democratic Convention: Twitterers Gush Over Michelle Obama. Twitter ( is a mini-blog site where people answer the question, "What are you doing?" You can "follow" people and read their "tweets" (updates) and you can post your own.

I was on Twitter the other night during the speech. It's one way I can share an experience with people on my terms, without having to put up with the person in a group who's talking over the TV, or making comments, or getting up to go to the bathroom and walking in front of the screen when I'm watching.

It was interesting to see people's comments, although not everyone was "gushing" as Wired put it - at least not on the list of people I follow. Of course, you can search for tweets on a particular topic and I would assume that's what they did.

Something about the whole article bugs me. I'm not sure exactly what. I think that they're dropping into our little twitter world and making sweeping judgments and moving on. Is that irrational? Of course it is. Twitter is completely open - anyone can search it and see what people are talking about. But being treated like bugs under a microscope is creepy, as if those of us on twitter are engaged in some secret society worthy of observation.

Perhaps I'm only projecting, as I'm so want to do, because I've taken more than a little bit of ribbing among friends for my affection for twitter. I say this when I can go for days without logging on. Maybe it's just that I seem to often find myself in the position of being "examined" and I was hoping that something like Wired would be above acting as if the fact that people are sharing their thoughts on news via twitter - as we've been doing for a long time - is worthy of an article.

It's old news. Just as much "news" is very old these days by the time we hear/see/read it. For example, I learned about the earthquake a few weeks ago from people on twitter who felt it before I heard it on the news. Why must we continue to pretend that this is surprising enough that it is worthy of an article in what is supposedly a publication devoted to the cutting edge technology?

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