Newsbytheway's Blog

December 8, 2009

Is Twitter for twits?

“Standing at the altar with @TracyPage where a second ago she became my wife! Gotta go, time to kiss my bride,”

Dana Hanna from Maryland updated his Twitter account from the altar steps as he was getting married. Amusing it is, but it underlines the inanity of Twitter. Majority of the 140-character-miniblogs or tweets that are posted online are frivolous.

As reported by The Independent, the top ten twitter trends as on today @9.30 am GMT includes topics like #youbeblownwhen (No.1 topic; have people discussing what would make them upset),  #omgfac,  #NowPlaying,   #Christmas etc. The only newsy topic discussed was #Copenhagen. One literally has to sift through the barrage of unnecessary information for anything news worthy.

Twitter mostly is been used as a marketing cum PR tool. If you go by the research done by Sysomos, more than a quarter of tweets everyday, are posted by machines. They are the self-generating tweets operated by sources like hotels offering deals, weather, games etc. In fact the most updated tweets accounts who tweet more than 2000 times/day are @dogbook (updates on what pets are doing) and @combatsi (update from the game Second Life).

Celebrities on Twitter

Besides PR, Twitter also caters to the voyeuristic needs of the people. You will find crème de la crème of the media in the tweetosmosphere. Here are few interesting people whom one can follow:

TV personalities: Stephen Fry, Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, Oprah Winfrey, Jimmy Carr

Journalists: Anderson Cooper, Rick Sanchez, Christina Amanpour

Sports Personalities: Andy Murray, Lance Armstrong, Michael Phelps

Politicians: Boris Johnson, Al GoreArnold Schwarzenegger

Twitter, no doubt,  is an important source of news. A perfect example of how technology can transcend boundaries. During the Iran elections recently when all forms of media was banned, it was twitter that came to rescue and became the voice of thousands of Iranians.

But these incidents are few and far apart.  Twitter needs much deeper penetration. It needs to go beyond its confinement of cozy developed world and face the reality of the developing and the under-developed countries. Only then, it can think of playing a meaningful role.

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