Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The New Twitter

I'm not a big Twitter user. I tried it for a while but then got overwhelmed with social media chaos. When I found something that I liked and wanted to share, I didn't know where I should share it. It became a juggling act for me to decide who I really wanted to see it. Did I want my Twitter followers to see it? Would any of my Facebook 'friends' want to see this? What about my friends that follow my blog on Google Reader? It's almost too much!! I found myself spinning out of control inside of this colossal web of social networking bookmarks. There's Facebook, Orkut, LinkedIn, Blogger, WordPress, FriendFeed, PicasaWeb, Flickr, Stumbled Upon, Delicious, Reddit, Digg, now Google Buzz... Oh and let's not forget to check your emails throughout the day too in between your IM's back and forth to your friends and coworkers.

Facebook has really become my main social media networking site. My wife and almost all of the people that I know around here are on Facebook. It's a great way to stay connected with everybody local and overseas. However, I'm noticing that it is kind of getting to be a little to much like high-school all over again. Every now and then I'll get a friend request from someone that I passed in the hall my freshman year. Should I accept? We weren't really "Friends" per se... Should I really be getting an invite to this event from someone that knew a guy that dated a girl I used to sit by in math class? Should I ignore or decline? The concept is great and it seems to be working. I do like the concept of 'Events', and my wife uses the crap out of the 'Photo Albums'. Our entire family is able to keep up to date with how fast our girls are growing and so forth. I do like it and it has added value in regards to keeping up to date with what's going on with those I know (near and far).

Twitter had always seemed like just another way for me to kill my precious time. It appears to be nothing more than a public area for anybody to do a quick brain dump about anything they wanted. To me, I can see this from Facebook (ie. Status Updates). Right?...

A lot of my geek friends use Twitter with great success. There are many Tweeters(?) out there that only tweet valuable links and content and to those I thank you. There are also those that use it as a public conversation log. It took me a long time to realize why anybody would want to post a tweet to somebody on twitter (for all to see). Why tweet a buddy when you could just email them or IM them? It's so that other can get involved if they want to.

There are also lots of Tweeters (again (?)) out there that tweet nothing but crap, rants, and random thoughts about nothing (ie. "I'm eating a burrito"). Occasionally, those "nothing tweeters" have some value in what they say though (ie. "I now have explosive gas"). So I do want to follow them, just not as close as I do those that consistently tweet valuable content all the time. After a while I found that Twitter was only useful (to me) when I followed a select group of people. The rest were just noise makers that wanted to get in on the action.

I know it's not just a noise collector. I know there is some great value out the. I know that 50 million geeks can't be wrong. I just need to figure out the best way to use it. Facebook is brainless to use. Twitter has a bit of a learning curve it seems (for me). There appears to be a science in filtering and searching for the most valuable content. I just haven't figured it out yet.

Today I learned that Twitter has changed it's design drastically. While I might not be a Twitter geek, I can appreciate the severity of re-architecting and redesigning a popular and extremely active website. It's epic really.Perhaps this new redesign will help me make sense of it all. We'll have to see...

Check out this cool video that they did for the new release:

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