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Monday, March 29, 2010

Hopefully, we'll be rid of the Twitter obsession soon

I've been a long-term Twitter skeptic.

I think it's value-negative, and of total irrelevance to anyone outside an unholy alliance of geeks, narcissists (politicians, celebrities etc), marketeers, "media" and their drone-like followers. It's mostly used by lazy journalists and broadcasters, as far as I can see.

I highlighted it as one of my "zeros" in my predictions for 2010.

So, it's edifying to see that the "growth" stats are proving my point for me.

The appearance of incredibly annoying floating Twitter buttons on some websites is a sign of desperation - and is hugely counter-productive, as visual spam of that sort is a great way to alienate people.

About time to swap the silly bird logo for a dodo, methinks.

Extinction beckons.


Anonymous said...

It may never become mass market but I find it indispensable. I follow a whole lot of museums, galleries and libraries and get a tangible benefit from doing so because I hear about special events early. It's not perfect but it has certainly enhanced my social and cultural life.

Texrat said...

Incredibly narrow, short-sighted thinking there Dean.

Dean Bubley said...

You're welcome to your opinion, but if you are a regular reader you'll know I pull no punches when I have a contrarian opinion.

From a professional point of view, I am more than happy to be cited in the future as the one who called put the Naked Emperor. Or maybe I'll be wrong.

From a personal point of view, I find it intensely annoying that Twitter is only advocated to me by a small group of self-serving individuals who seem to think it's cool without being able to articulate its benefits. I'm quite happy if I don't get spanned by yet more social media pollution.

I think Twitter is in the same category as things like location based services, metro WiFi, voice recognition, the iPad and videotelephony. Useful for niches but hyped mercilessly as a panacea.

Texrat said...

Seems your negative personal experience is clouding objectivity. Twitter is of course closer to SMS (and messaging in general) in value than the other items you cite.

Twitter certainly started off as something mostly frivolous, but like many creations with nonobvious imemdiate benefits its value evolves over time. Twitter has the potential to be the needle that stitches various disparate services together in light, quick, useful bursts. As more context is wrapped around those micromessages (including location) that value will only increase.

I always appreciate your tendency to punch unpulled, but this time the glass is actually half-full. ; )

Phil said...

Have to agree with you on this one, Dean -- especially the part about Twitter being the province of "geeks, narcissists, marketeers, media and their drone-like followers." I've managed to sit out the Facebook craze as well, and there are signs in my household that it may also have jumped the shark. Social media and social networking are all well and good, but fads come and go. Facebook and Twitter have yet to achieve any kind of staying power, and there is little doubt in my mind that the herd will move on in short order.

Hywel said...

It is narcissistic, it's true, but at the same time I've found truly useful information that has helped in my job. It's great for keeping track of news in my sector, and provides a bridge to talk to people in that sector I might otherwise have trouble meeting.