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Why Some People Miss the Twitter Train

Twitter Bird by (monroedb1)

Alright, I’m jumping on the Twitter train. No, not that train…I’ve been on that one for months. I’m talking about the one defending Twitter to all the naysayers – those who are trying desperately to catch up when the Twitter train has already left the station.

Normally, I wouldn’t even think about writing a blog post like this because 1) it ends up sounding like a rant, 2) it’s already been done, and 3) that’s not the purpose of this blog.

However, an article on MSNBC.com entitled “OMG! Shut up about Twitter already” royally pissed me off. And I really don’t get angry easily.

Maybe it’s the irony in the headline for an article that claims that they, too, “don’t get it…” I really wish the media would take their own advice and stop complaining about those who use and find value in Twitter.

Here’s the thing: I understand that some people just can’t see the appeal of Twitter. And that’s fine. Of course it seems like all you do is talk about yourself: that’s exactly what their tagline proposes. However the “what are you doing” has evolved, and those who embrace Twitter recognize its worth.

A program is only as useful as the effort you put into it. Millions of people have tested Twitter out, experimented, and made it work for them in a variety of creative ways. Some use it for professional (and respectable) career advice; others use it as their primary news source; more, still, enjoy it as a way to keep in touch. Personally, I’ve used Twitter to build a community, connect with warm and intelligent people both locally and globally, and even to give a character a voice.

Twitter doesn’t work for everyone, but the point is to try it, test it, give it more than a day. If you still don’t find value in it, move onto something else that does work for you.

But make sure you’re doing it right in the first place before you completely disregard it.

Twitter is not about numbers. Twitter is not about constant self-congratulation and promotion. Twitter is not about lists or updates.

The real value in Twitter, what millions of people have tapped into, lies in the community.

Twitter is about conversation. Twitter is about connections. Twitter is about relating to each other in even the simplest of ways, helping us realize that we’re all human.

It’s about sharing information and learning. It’s about being honest when expressing your thoughts. It’s about offering insight and welcoming advice.

The beauty of Twitter is the ability to find each other and form relationships with people all over the world, making your little corner of it seem that much smaller.

There’s real value to be found in those 140 characters, if you’re willing to look for it. Just get on board and start talking.

5 thoughts on “Why Some People Miss the Twitter Train”

  1. You’re absolutely right: in just the past few days, I’ve probably stumbled across 20 or more news stories, blog posts, and passing mentions about Twitter, and most of the people just don’t seem to get it.

    You know what I say? If you don’t get it, then leave it alone. If you don’t like it, then don’t use it. Leave it to those of us who actually get it and value it for what it’s worth. As the Internet and social media keeps evolving, I’m sure Twitter will go the way of Myspace or even Facebook, and something new will take its place. And everyone will complain about that too.

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  3. Hey Susan,

    My sentiments exactly! There are so many ways to utilize Twitter, but you have to spend time working with it to find the way it works for you. I was one of those people who questioned it’s value when I was first asked to review it for a column I write. I went through the various initial thoughts of how self-absorbed it was to use it, but deep down, I could just tell there was something there.

    Fast forward to today, and I have TWO accounts! Something, I would have never believed would happen. One is my personal account where I develop professional relationships and the other is my company account where I develop relationships with the readers of our site. I am simply amazed at how powerful this tool is. I am really grateful for being an early-adopter and just smile when I read another review that makes fun of Twitter.

    Thanks again for defending us Twitter-lovers!

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