Twitter’s Mystifying Appeal

 More proof that your humble blogger has his blind spots.

 Almost two years ago  I ridiculed Twitter as an inexplicable time-waster for egotists and bores, and now, doggone if members of Congress and the Obama administration aren’t hooked on Twitter, proving–wait, maybe I was right–that it’s an inexplicable time-waster for egotists and bores. (No, I haven’t actually Twittered, er, Tweeted yet, but doesn’t this set up a nice sequel down the road?)

Whatever I thought of it back then, Twitter is definitely catching on. If you’re still blanking on it, here’s a quick primer from the always useful Wordspy: 

n. The Twitter social networking service and the people who use it. Also: twitterverse, Twitter-verse. [Blend of Twitter and universe.]



Example Citations:
The Twitterverse is expanding. 

Twitter, that microblogging tool that caught on with teens and twentysomethings using it to tell loyal followers what they’re doing at any given time — in 140 characters or less — is now becoming part of the business strategy for a wide range of brands, from Skittles to Fairfax County. …

Shashi Bellamkonda, Network Solutions’ social media swami (yes, that’s his real title), organized the tutorial, attended by about 30 people. He’s a more prolific Twitterer than most, posting anywhere from five to 15 tweets per day about anything from his daily routine to the news. Big companies such as Dell are active in the Twitterverse addressing customer service issues, he said.
—Kim Hart, “Firms Take to The Tweetable Business Model,” The Washington Post, March 9, 2009



Similarly, Barack Obama’s inaugural address to US Congress tweeted live by several politicians on Capitol Hill via their mobile phones. But the most famous Twitterverse blast, so far, has been from Janis Krum, a passenger on one of the ferries on the Hudson River when US Airways flight 1549 crash landed on New York’s famous river in January. 

He was tweeting images of the accident via third-party Twitter photo sharing software while passengers were still being evacuated, providing many of the first images to the world before most media outlets got there.
—Samantha Amjadali, “Tracking the twitterati,” Sunday Herald Sun, March 1, 2009



Earliest Citation:
Twitter is a sort of minute-by-minute blog that you send and receive from a computer or text message. All too often this takes the form of scintillating entries like “I’m eating breakfast,” and other stuff that you really don’t need to know about other people. But the allure at SXSW is that all the cool kids are doing it. So if you want to find the cool parties, you have to read Twitter. It’s geek clique chic.
—Adam Pasick, “SXSW and the Twitterverse,” Monkey Daemon, March 12, 2007

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