T for Twitter

Amongst the many social media networks that abound these days, one that I really enjoy is (T for) Twitter. To think that this has revolutionised the way people communicate in just five years is mind-boggling. Micro-blogging has caught everyone’s imagination or at least that of an estimated 200 million known Twitter users all over the world.

When Jack Dorsey launched the company in July 2006, I don’t think even he would have expected it to grow to become such a knock out success. There is enough material and more available on Twitter so I shall spare you the details.

In this post I would like to share my observations.

  • Make new friends: Great medium to link up to like-minded people. You need not like what I do and I am not obliged to like what you like. Twitter provides opportunities for you to link up with like-minded people through the use of #hashtags and lists.
  • Learn something new:  Often I actively look out for tweets from some people I follow only because I genuinely enjoy their tweets. I don’t mention names because they are too many to name. They are witty and though provoking. I have learnt a lot through reading the links they have shared or their perspectives they have provided.
  • Improve your Editing: No kidding! If you thought expressing your thoughts in a few lines was difficult, try expressing them in just 140 characters. I have found that tweeting helps my editing skills. It forces me to cut the flab. It compels me to cut ruthlessly to express my thoughts succinctly.
  • Improve your vocabulary: Building on the last point, you also get to improve your vocab . You have to dig deep into your mind to come out with appropriate words. Needless to say, I am against the tendency to take recourse to the bane of modern day communication, today’s texting language of acronyms and short forms like gr8 for “great” and “osom” for awesome.
A word about #hashtags. I think they are a great innovation. They lump together all tweets about a topic and give you an avenue to read/write about topics that interest you amongst a zillion out there. For example, some of the #hashtags I often use are #amwriting, #amediting and #writingtips. Not to mention the one that has brought so many of us together right now #atozchallenge!
I am honoured to feature in “lists” relating to writing and books. Staying with a few lists again helps you focus on your main areas of interest. It does not mean that you must feature in X number of lists. It helps narrow your focus. Otherwise, by being in too many you could simply go down swamped by tweets.
They say that Twitter is now an integral part of an author’s platform. However, rightly or wrongly, I don’t restrict my tweets to subjects like writing. That in my view would be uni-dimensional. I love to tweet about other topics like India,it’s economy, executive coaching and cricket . Topics that I am passionate about.
It feels good when your tweets are mentioned by others or are re-tweeted. Return the favour and re-tweet those which you think are worth spreading. I don’t worry too much about the number of followers. If you have a few followers who genuinely enjoy your tweets, that’s far better than having hundreds who don’t care or even read what you share. It’s not obligatory for you to have as many followers as those you follow. 
A rule of thumb is the more people you follow, or should that be tweeple, the more you stand to gain by way of perspective, experience and networking.

2 thoughts on “T for Twitter

  1. I always thought that twitter was stupid, but recently decided to just test it before passing final judgement.

    I LOVE IT!

    I also tweet about everything, from my blog to my writing progress to my day. My blog is where I try to keep it more centered on writing.

    Anyhow. See you again after the challenge. ^_^

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