Friday, 25 February 2011

Tweet, tweet, tweet

and Twitter.
When I started out on this crazy job of mine we communicated by letter, fax and (in extreme situations) telephone. At least telegrams were pretty much a thing of the past. Now we have the internet and, with it, things like Twitter and Facebook and blogs etc. (There is also Skype but we will not go there. I refuse to need to appear fully clothed at any hour of the day.)
I have two Twitter accounts. One for work and the other for a little light relief. I need the light relief. Modern Technology means that I am now required to be more, rather than less, available.
If I was a really good, caring and dedicated individual I would learn to send text messages on a mobile 'phone and carry it with me twenty-four hours a day. Obviously I am not. Sometimes I do actually get some sleep. I occasionally do other things as well. I also plan to retire properly one day.
Twitter however is - well, useful. The early Twitter account allowed you to send a message of up to 140 characters/spaces in length. It is now possible to send longer messages but the discipline of using just 140 has to be a good one. It is good to learn to say things succinctly. It is possible to ask a question or give an answer in that amount of space.
I hear people say that "Twitter is a waste of time and space. What's the point of hearing about what people are eating for their supper or the shoes they are wearing?" These same people are the ones who will happily gossip about who said what to whom.
Twitter can also be a support group. Someone wanted to know something about souffle the other day, a writer wanted some names for Spanish males, someone else was anxious about their synopsis and a mother wanted suggestions on how to help her 11yr old handle the experience of having an MRI scan. In each case other people came up with help and advice. Several of the news feeds I subscribe to are also on Twitter. Twitter is a quick alert to things I often need to be aware of.
Twitter is there in the background for me. I do not let it take over my life. I "purrowl" in my cat personality, join in the strange conversations a little and scatter some "cat hairs" along the tweet lines. Most of the people I "know" there I do not know at all. We could pass one another in the street and have no idea that we were doing so. I will almost certainly never meet most of them. I may not meet any of them.
Does it matter? Perhaps. I think it would matter more if, in a world where people are at risk of becoming increasingly isolated, I did not join in a little virtual fun now and then.


Anonymous said...

Do you ever find it a little weird being ahead of us in time? Ros

catdownunder said...

Oh, all the time! It is the only time I ever come first though.