Welcome to the Twit-e-que

Several online sources have compared Twitter to a cocktail party. In my estimation, Twitter is not a cocktail party, but more like a very large backyard barbeque or a neighborhood block party. When you open up your page and are greeted by the gang already there, you can spend time just taking it all in, engage someone if you want, shout out your latest news, or just walk away and get a hamburger.

After all, Twitter is far from formal (although some twitterers do bring a sense of formality to their presence). But mostly, it is just relaxed, in tone, social mores, and attendance requirements. People expect you to come and go. And it can be very spontaneous.

Now I know my take on this platform may be different from yours, because it’s very likely that my twitter experience is different from yours. And in many ways, that is the beauty of twitter. Mostly, my experience has been seeking out people to read. I have done this through all sorts of ways:

  • Clicking onto pages of some of the people I follow and who follow me, and
  • Clicking on “following” of someone’s profile I am currently reading
  • Twitter site generated suggestions

My thread of tweets has become long enough, and I check infrequently enough (usually only once a day), that undertaking the first step is the only way I can find to catch up with some of the really interesting people online.

So what, in my estimation, constitutes interesting? That is hard to say because what I want to read at any given time is both eclectic and mercurial. I want to learn, and I want to engage. I tend to follow:

  • People who are funny (as defined by me)
  • People who provide interesting links in the areas of world events, music, social media, marketing and business practices. Of course, what defines interesting is again based on my acid test, and the topics seem to broaden all the time. I have read tweets (and follow) people from all over the world, from all walks of life, and from the entire spectrum of age groups.
  • People who may bring an irreverence to what they tweet, but still provide some depth (again, my opinion… are you sensing a theme here?).

And like any neighborhood, there are the residents worth avoiding. I am NOT really interested in finding ways to build a business on Twitter (although usage of Twitter by businesses fascinates me), and unless it is very unusual, I am not really concerned about what you had for breakfast, what time you had it, or who you ate it with. There are enough captivating viewpoints out there, that spammers and the self absorbed need not appear on my radar. (Although the irreverent quality listed above can make up for some levels of self-absorption.)

So like a block party, I bob and weave through the crowd, settling in for a while with a comfortable friend, taking the time to catch up on their latest news, and then move onto someone new. What an amazing space. I know I’ll be back for more, but for now, I need to go find that burger…

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