I can’t believe how often I now hear the word twitter throughout my day anymore; from the local National Public Radio station telling me to ‘follow them on twitter,’ to local news networks boasting about how they are now tweeting, even my 50 something year old boss chats up her tweeting savviness. Every blog and website online (including this one) have a link to ‘follow’ them on this strange communication device. It seems that most everyone these days is happy to announce to the world that they participate in this trendy online service, even if they can’t correctly conjugate the word twitter.
I too have a twitter account, but after using it regularly for some time I’ve finally come to the point where I have serious doubts about its usefulness. It’s not that I don’t know how to use it or what potential it has for both business and individuals, I’ve already written my own thoughts about how to get the most out of twitter in an older post. In fact, I can still appreciate twitter when I receive actual information of value from experts in particular industries, local news, and other important updates from companies like Dogfish Head. Unfortunately, it is increasingly rare to actually find these few worthwhile ‘tweets’ amongst the onslaught of useless and trivial information within the ‘twitterverse’.
Due to the ridiculously mammoth amount of pointless information being shared on twitter (including those long personal instant messaging conversations between two users) many people on twitter have resorted to platforms designed to manage the garbageflow such as tweetdeck. Tweetdeck effectively allows you to screen out messages from people you don’t care so much about and create individual matrices of conversations, (ie lumping all personal contacts into one frame, all business contacts in another, all news sources into a frame and so on).
Honestly I don’t even know how people use twitter without tweetdeck, how can anyone possibly sort through so many pointless updates? Do I really care that someone I know is in the process of picking up their kids? Wondering what to wear? Getting psyched about National Mustard Day? Well, possibly the last update mentioned but you get the idea, it’s called INFORMATION OVERLOAD!! Even the most useful, informative, important tweets get lost in the mess.
Am I suggesting that twitter has lost its ability to be useful in some ways? No. Is it still worth investing time into? … Maybe. Call me a twiter, I just don’t think this trendy platform is the best use of time for business or personal use anymore.
I invite you to share your own recent success story with using twitter in the comments section below. My guess is that they are few and far between. That being said, I can certainly appreciate twitter success stories such as Kogi, this is how twitter SHOULD be used. Restaurants and news agencies are in my opinion the best positioned businesses to take advantage of twitter.
Unfortunately for the rest of us, twitter seems destined to become ever more overloaded with mindless nothings that increasingly drown out any value that might exist from this popular free service.