Down with Twitter

 Posted by at 15:46  Down with
Nov 232013
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“For me, the most fascinating interface is Twitter. I have odd cosmic thoughts every day and I realized I could hold them to myself or share them with people who might be interested.”

Neil deGrasse Tyson

Now I get it. Twitter is not for the hoi polloi. It’s a place where the elites can cast pearls before swine and smirk. No wonder I’m frustrated. I apparently don’t have the intellectual gravitas for Twitter. Cognoscenti use Twitter is for sharing those cosmic thoughts that regularly pop into their brains. Lately those cosmic insights for my brain seem to be in short supply. My impression of Twitter was that it was a place to post snappy one liners. Not that I’ve even been good at those either but, at least, I’ve got a chance.

twitterWhat could be more appealing than an audience panting for your input? Theoretically, the idea of a forum for pithy insights is appealing. Something happens. Your synapses crackle. The brain responds but then there’s a problem. What do you do with your inspiration? Blurt it out like fool with Tourettes? Write a letter to the New York Times? Share it with your brain trust? It’s not easy. If you leave it unsaid, it’s like the tree falling in the forest- nobody will know. You brain will explode. It’s a disaster.

When there is a problem, somebody will provide a solution. In this case, it’s Twitter.

I confess. Social Media mystifies me. I don’t get it. Facebook and Linked-in make some sense. Facebook has pictures and Linked-in organizes your business contacts. Twitter is another kind of thing. Twitter is limited to 140 characters. Maybe cosmic thinkers like Tyson can communicate their thoughts in 140 characters. I know that I can’t.

Life in these modern times baffles me. People can’t seem to function without a cell phone in their ear or a touchstone in their hands. Facebook and Twitter are publicly traded companies. Savvy inverters buy and sell shares with the goal of making money. People can now make money exploiting the basest quality of human nature- our egos.

So what makes me think that I can use Twitter effectively? And , if I use Twitter effectively, to gain thousands of followers, what have I gained? First of all, the odds are against me. There are 9100 hundred Tweets generated each second. What are the odds that anything I tweet would be even noticed, let alone appreciated? What are the odds that I will notice something that I really care about in that abundance of information? I don’t have the statistics on that but my empirical judgment from experience puts it at slightly greater than nada. It’s like playing the Lottery. If I win thousands of followers on Twitter, will that guarantee me eternal fame and fortune? Not likely. I’ll leave that to Tyson and his ilk.

For me Twitter is an interesting sociological phenomenon something like the lemmings rushing off a cliff. I don’t understand it and see no way that it benefits me to learn. From my perspective a tweet is valuable solely to the tweeter and only because he mistakenly believes that someone out there cares and understands. That is certainly the only satisfaction I can find in Twitter. The lemmings apparently disagree. The woods seem to be full of tweeters.



Ralph is the inspiration for Cantankerous Old Coots and is our Grand Duke of Cantankerousness

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  One Response to “Down with Twitter”

  1. I agree with your idea. Sharing thoughts and information are much more easier today because of social media like the Twitter.

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