in General Coding

Twitter – Useless Life-Saver

So, I’m about to post a response as to why I both agree and disagree that Twitter sort of has Jumped The Shark of late, when I happened to take a gander at Digg and came across this fine piece of ironic Diggxtapositioning:

Google patronizes Twitter one moment while participating in saving lives via Twitter the other

Google patronizes Twitter one moment while participating in saving lives via Twitter the other

To me, this perfectly exemplifies the confused, convoluted, what-the-hell-is-this and by-the-way-I-totally-love-it thing we call Twitter.  I actually even go through my own Jekyll and Hyde phases with Twitter, sometimes from one tweet to the next, one moment finding it incredibly useful, particularly when fellow tweeters share first-dibbs info to their followers about upcoming events or useful stuff, such as discounts on products or whatever.

But in the next moment, after that very useful tweet, there will be the inevitably annoying tweet-fart, as in when people share important information such as that they just ran out of toilet paper or that their dog just farted.  Ok, I guess that could be funny…

But getting back to the above juxtaposed Diggs about Twitter, the statement that they make more than anything else is that none of us, not even the CEO of Google, really understands Twitter, really knows what to make of it.  In some ways, Twitter is a microcosm of what the Internet was back when the only browser was Netscape (ok, and Lynx and Mosaic) and AltaVista was the hot search engine (and Hotbot too) and we were all exploring this amazing World Wide Web novelty store that was derided as totally useless by some and adored, naively or not, by the millions who started getting online back in those days.  I remember people back in those days scoffing at the idea that people would buy books online from some weird site called Amazon, instead of buying them in a bookstore.  I remember people back in those days scoffing at the idea of being able watch TV online at a time when, at best, the only video you might find on the web were short clips, which were a very big deal to download/view.  Well, you get the point.  Twitter is just another one of those weird ideas that people like Schmidt, perhaps the most unexpected of Luddites, just doesn’t get, or thinks they get but don’t because fact is, like in the web in its early days, the thing just wasn’t mature enough to really be understood. (Well, except for by a couple guys named Larry and Sergey – what’s the name of that company they started again?)

Oh, and in case you want to actually read the two ironically juxtaposed stories…

Google CEO: Twitter A ‘Poor Man’s Email System’

Twitter, Google Maps Used To Track Down Two Missing Skiers

  1. Ha! Nice catch – did not notice that :) Oh, and I absolutely love the Jon Stewart clip, especially when he is about define what Twitter is in a way only Jon Stewart can do.

  2. But the real story you missed on your digg capture is the Cop who had the hell scared out of him by a kid who was wearing a mask… from who, do you think? That’s right, twitter has it that the mask was stolen from one of the missing skiiers, who infact were trying to ride Lance Armstrong’s stolen moped down the mountain, but they went out of bounds without a beeper.

    And when the Daily Show “nailed it” the other night, well… We’ve all got a lot of catching up to do. (the newest “better” twitter app) (even faster tweeting)
    Twitter Frenzy on the Daily Show – (video)

    Do you follow?



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