Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Are We Making Progess?

Lindsay Lohan does it while she is in jewelry stores. Newt Gingrich does it.  Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore do it a lot.  Chris Lee and Anthony Weiner did it and caused a ruckus. 

I have done it but frankly, I just don't get the point of it. I am, of course, talking about the  ugly little half-sister to Facebook, TWITTER.

Would someone, please explain the enjoyment of Twitter to me?   Why do people want to put the limitation on their communication at 140 characters?  Who even came up with that number?

Did the developer say something to the effect " Gosh, I think anything over 140 letters and spaces  is just tooo much information.  Shut up already! Really, man, if you can't say what needs to be said in about 20 words, just keep your mouth shut."

Periodically, I go over to my Twitter account  (@veryconflicted) to see what funny one liners have come my way.  I follow 7 people.  Most of those 7 are famous comedians.  Now that in it self, pretty much would limit me from wanting to tweet anything.  Who am I to go up against the professionals?

As for just being one of the lemmings that hang out over at Twitter,  looking around, I have noticed things that do make me smile...occasionally make me laugh. 

Sometimes there are tweets that touch on current events. In this category there are tweets, which I might add is not for the faint of heart and  are not particularly funny.

(**For disclosure:  This is a fictitious Twitter feed as I didn't want to dirty up my site with the likes of you-know-who and are sick-of-hearing-his-name.)

One of my biggest objections, behind the whole 140 character restriction, is the "subtle" but very real rejection...exclusion  being perpetrated  by the "big time" Twitter accounts holders.  The poor rejected followers don't even realize that they are summarily being kicked to the curb.

Think of it this way....Some accounts have millions of followers  but they only follow a very few of their followers.  (This might be confusing so here are some examples)  Conan O'Brien has 3,259, 555 followers, he on the other hand person.  Well now, over 3 million people are interested in what quick little short bits of inspired thoughts he is thinking and he is interested in what one person might have on his/her mind. (who would that be??? His wife? Jay Leno?? hmmm)

Even Lady Gaga, who currently holds the top spot with 10,875,986 followers, is currently following 143,157 of her closest pals. Still, for you nearly 11 million friends that are hanging out to see her tweets, most of you aren't really part of her inner circle.  You do get that, right??? If this was a Dodge Ball game, she is not picking you to be on her team!!!!

After numerous stories of the stupid things people do on the Internet that get them into serious trouble, I was thinking "What would  things  have looked like if all of this Tweeting and Facebook friending had started in the middle of the 19th Century.  What if, people like Poe, Wadsworth or Frost were limited to 140 characters when they had a thought?  Would they want to share these little epiphanies with their pals?  Would they ever have finished one of their poems, if they had to write them in 140 character increments? Would there be crotch shots, or maybe ankle shots of the hussies?  Would there be shocking statements dealing with bloomers or petticoats? 

Is this what Twitter would have look like in the mid 1800's for a few creative friends, just thinking some interesting thoughts and tweeting them to their friends....

So, I welcome your comments to explain, why you use Twitter and why you enjoy it.  Why isn't this the same thing as emails and texting that wouldn't limit you to 140 characters.  Feel free to tweet me at @veryconflicted as it may be the one and only time anyone actually tweets to that account.  Or just comment or email me...whatever is your thing.

The Good for the Day...Social media can be fun and seemingly a lot of people understand it better than I do.

The Bad....Overuse, using rudely, sending offensive crap that can get you in trouble, morons that don't use it correctly,  and the list goes on and on and on.

The Weird of the Day...The ladies over at the View were talking about the tweeted pictures of Anthony Weiner and Barbara Walters said and "the pictures of the Congressman were very're saying ...uh uh she dihn't...yes she did.  You can watch this on Youtube or ABC. It is the Hot Topics section of the program aired on June 7th.   Flattering??? Really Barbara?? You are losing it!!!


Madge said...

You're a great writer Cheryl. I really liked this post a lot. I have never tweeted, and I only read tweets by accident. That's probably because I'm really computer literate, but I don't understand how to use Facebook. So tweeting is lost on me.
Ps sorry I didn't come around for my tag, life's been a little hectic, but I'm not complaining. :)

Raine said...

Twitter is fun for sharing/reading quick thought on the go, more as a phone app type thing than desktop. Anymore though, it seems to be used as a real-time way for people to link others to blog posts they have written or found.
The best thing, for me, is quick answers to parenting/pregnancy questions since I follow a lot of parents and birthy people.

Bodaciousboomer said...

To be perfectly honest, I really don't get it either. I keep waiting to read one that says "Had a really great ****!"

But you're not following my tweets? I'm crushed. Seriously.

Junebug said...

I used to never be on twitter. It truly annoyed me. However, I have a few friends that make it fun. Especially once I learned the trick of hashtags.
Example: Hubby informed me, "Teamwork is about a man and woman working together to accomplish what the woman wants." #mytrainingisworking
It would be cute without the tag but the tag is a funny punchline.
I don't follow very many celebs because they tend to not tweet much or tweet too much or just promote stuff. I am on fb mostly for family and old friends. I'm on twitter for current friends and talking about TV, etc. It is better for conversation than fb.
I can see the annoyance of twitter. I would give it up before I gave up fb.

I won't even watch a clip of that horrible view show. :-)

Cheryl P. said...

I am trying to familiarize myself more with the social networking sites as it seems this is more how people communicate today. I will say that I wish communicating wasn't being reduced to quite the level that we are sharing what brand of cereal we ate at breakfast.

Cheryl P. said...

As far as the tag, I always feel like that is a bit like sending a chain letter. Some of those things really eat up the time. This time of year is so busy and I can barely keep up my posts. So don't be sorry at all. Love your blog.

Cheryl P. said...

All kidding aside, I can see it would be fun if you were directly communicating with people you have common interests with. It is more the hanging out for celebrities to send out one liners that I don't quite get the sense of. Also, I haven't figured out all the nuances of it yet.

Cheryl P. said... are so right, I need to follow you. I will be expecting to hear updates throughout the day with things like what you had for your afternoon snack. That would make it more fun than being one of the millions that is following Lady Gaga

Cheryl P. said...

That is the missing component for most of us. We have to have a group of friends that would keep it social. Just following a total strangers one-liners is a bore. I think for me the other problem is I haven't figure out quite how it works. I need to hire you for a tutorial.

Cheryl P. said...

As far as the View goes. It is horrible. I started Tivoing it as a source for Hot Topics but honestly those women are so annoying, self rightous and rude it is hard to focus on the subjects they are hashing over.

jacqui said...

I usually like twitter very much...but I'll tweet you later to tell you why. I love your twitteth tweets!

Jewell said...

OMG...that was hilarious! =) Well I tweeted you why I use twitter, but since it looks like the last tweet YOU sent was 5/14 I'm not entirely sure you'll see it! You might have forgotten your password (despite what you try to tell us here *shoots you the stink eye*) =)

Anywho....yeah. That's all I've got. I think. I don't know. If I figure it out I'll tweet you! =-p HAHAHA! I crack myself up. =)

Cheryl P. said...

I think part of the problem with Twitter is I don't get how to use it. I must just be missing the fun of it. Oh, yeah...then there is the problem that I am WORDY.

Cheryl P. said...

Yeah, I have sent out a total of 17 tweets I think. 16 were stupid. I am not a 140 characters or less kind of gal. The one that made any sense got me a Christian College following me and they quickly unfollowed me the minute I said a bad word. (and you do know that I like the occasional "holy crap" or "crazy as batshit".

Cheryl P. said...

By the crack me up too. HAHAHAHA

Annie (Lady M) x said...

Eh up Cheryl me lovely. I am with you...... I don't get twitter at all. Once I have written my blog, I have no time left expend on mindless tweets. But maybe mindless tweets is the point - you don't have to have writing skills to do it?!

Jayne said...

This is wonderful. You are one clever, funny lady with some tight writing skills. I know I'm always going to be entertained when I drop by. "Tweetith." That's just freakin' genius.

Mostly, I use Twitter to promote blog posts or share posts and articles that I like. I follow a lot of political writers and often just troll there for ideas and to catch the latest take on various stories. I've rarely carried on any kind of conversation there, but it's fun to stop by and check things out a couple times a day.

Cheryl P. said...

It seems one would need to be a stand up comedian to be good at Twitter. Me sticking to 140 characters is all but impossible.

Cheryl P. said...

I think that is how I use Facebook. I am more a voyeur. I like to look around and read what others are saying but I don't participate much. Really, if I have something to say it shows up in my blog at some point.
Thanks for the kind words.

Nicky said...

This was so funny! I love the thought of all those classic authors trying to write using only 140 characters!

I've admitted it before, I'm a Twidiot. Mike signed WWFC up and I've gone as far as looking at our home page and deleting the emails that tell me when someone new follows us. I don't get it, but then, I haven't ever tried.

oldereyes said...

Well, I signed up for Twitter to see what it was. I used it for a while to post short thoughts in the sidebar of my blog but I don't seem to have many short thoughts. Each of my new posts generates a Tweet but I make no effort to make it anything more than a shortlink anymore. Last time I looked, I had four followers but then again, I don't follow anyone. I think what I like most about it is that it gives celebrities and athletes a way to speak to the public with NO filters ... so we get to see them as they are (often just annoying and dumb) not as their agents would package them. That is indeed great post-fodder.