The one thing that stood out most for me listening to the interview with Biz Stone was how quickly and how totally Twitter changed. When they started it was seen as the height of frivolousness. He and the other founders were ridiculed by their friends, who told them Twitter was useless (I liked his statement “so is ice cream”), that it was like Seinfield–about nothing. Which was fine with him, they were having fun.
I think this interview with Biz Stone really did stand out. Three years ago, when it was in its infancy, nobody really knew of Twittter. Now it is one of the biggest things on the internet. The viral reality it has created has been a phenomenon equal to that of Facebook (as much as I hate to say it). Twitter was a support system that helped the Egyptian people bring down former President, Hosni Mubarak, who had been one of the most tenured dictators in that region. In another interesting twist, Twitter has been contacted by the United States State Department to postpone scheduled maintenance, to make sure protesters in Iran could communicate with each other. This is huge, anytime the Feederal Government tells you to postpone an important update to the site, you know your doing something right. This is just one example of how important Twitter has become in our day.
It is also a pretty good example of how quickly technology, and more specifically communication technology is changing. Twitter didn’t exist for public use before 2006, but now it is altering the landscape of politics everywhere, such as the middle east, completely changing the lives of millions of people. However, like all mass communication, it can also be used in important, but negative ways. Like all tools, it is up to the users to choose to make positive changes to make it a better social utility than it already has become and will continue to be.
I also did my ten tweets and I had a really great experience. It was so much fun. For someone who really does hate Twitter, or used to, it is actually really entertaining to follow people and read what they write. My experience were kind of of simplistic. I did some sports re-tweets since I am a sports fanatic, and I re-tweeted friends. I did make sure to use the hashtag quite a bit for my posts. I had some good stories and some responses to others. I also tried out some @ shout outs, though I was kind of late on those. Kind of unfortunate because that was good too. But I really found that not having a smart phone to update my tweets sucked because I had to keep logging in to Twitter and I would usually forget. If I had a smart phone I would have tweeted a hell of a lot more. Maybe in a couple of months, I guess. But all things considered, I liked following, getting followed, and tweeting. I think even after this assignment I will continue to Tweet. Though I probably won’t be tweeting as much as James or Megan because I am just not that into it. But overall an intriguing assignment, I would definitely do it over again.