Wednesday, April 11, 2007

resistance to Twitter similar to blog hate

Ah, this is exactly like what happened with blogs and, to a lesser degree, podcasts.

People don't get Twitter.

Is it simply that they resist learning new interfaces and new networking skills?

It typically goes something like this...

You invite a blog ally or a blog-hating offline friend to join your Twitter communication channel. They read some of your tweets (Twitter messages), wherein you try to provide links to interesting tools and relevant articles. You make pithy profound statements as you experiment with various technologies.


But then they read the tweets of other Twitterers. Boring. Myopic. Narcissistic. Trivial. Frivolous.

What the Luddites and techno-phobes always say. Resistance to an emerging technology, simply based on how early adaptors are using it. Failure of imagination. Weak ability to picture how the tool could be used differently, more idiosyncratically, more effectively for their purposes.

Well, you know they used to make fun of the electric light bulb, automobile, and telephone.

"What do I want a telephone for?" the old geezer rasps. "I've listened in on some phone conversations. Private confessions. Personal drivel. Mundane. Boring. Stupid. Just mental noise and clutter. I don't want to have any part of such a trivial thing as a telephone."

Bennett the Blog Hater and Internet Radio DJ and I had this debate today, via email.


bennett theissen

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

To: vaspers the grate

Sorry, Steve, but after looking over some Twitter pages, I find it incredibly tedious and of no interest at all.

I don't want to be part of something that wants to know what I'm doing right now 24 hours a day.

So what do people post?

Well, they seem to be at lunch, or want to tell me what kind of coffee someone is drinking. At this point this looks worse than MySpace.

Pithy? Who cares -- if they have nothing to say? And if you think that presidential candidates are really on this, rather than some tech geek who works for them, you're being naive.

I would rather just write somebody directly rather than post messages.

I see no point in using an Ipod, not after all these years, because I don't need 5000 songs at my fingertips, and I see no point in blogs because they bore me and serve no purpose for me that I have found yet, and Twitter now adds to the pile of useless tech nonsense.

Sorry, no winner here.

vaspers the grate

Wed, Apr 11, 2007 at 10:39 AM

To: bennett theissen

Blogs and Twitter type social networking tools are useful for promotions, like driving traffic to a site, such as KillRadio. As we mix our marketing platforms for maximum effect, the multi-interactional media are booming, with much productivity accomplished.

It's not about what others are Twittering or blogging or podcasting about. It's about what we do with it. You could make the exact same critique of telephones, mail, email, television, and radio.

99% of films, tv shows, email, postal mail, telephone communications, are junk.

Most communications, from books to movies, are boring and stupid garbage. One film in a million is worth owning. One telephone call in a thousand is mission critical and memorable. Etc.

A Twitter network is created by you, the user, and you connect with only those friends, peers, colleagues you wish to have in your circle.

Then, as you discover cool links, good netlabels, mp3 file sharing sites, etc., you post the links and your inner circle of friends has them. You include links to your Kill Radio and Radio 4 All stuff.

It's all about experimenting with new online communication tools, some will be abandoned, others modified, others re-mixed, and others used as is.

It's all about getting more people to your KillRadio shows and getting Camouflage Danse [art rock band that Bennett and I co-founded, now defunkt] mp3s online.

I am trying to do so with, but having no luck uploading mp3s to this beta site. Still searching.

Bennett Theissen

Wednesday, April 11. 2007

To: vaspers the grate

Hi! I appreciate your defense, but I disagree with your assertion that it is not about what other people are doing on the Twitter.

Your statistics are also off by a dimension or two. (I don't believe the number of movies made to date has hit one million yet, for instance.)

I specifically mentioned the I-pod because those little things are now for some reason considered an essential part of modern life, but as I said I see no reason to have one. I get by fine without it, and I probably listen to more music than most people.

I spend maybe three hours a week online, and I don't have access to the net at home.

I now find i have to check my My Space page occasionally because there are always people writing to me and it's rude to leave things hanging eternally -- but I do that as little as I can because I have so little time for it.

To add another commitment online is more than I wish to deal with right now, so I pass. It's nothing personal.

If I liked what I saw on Twitter I'd jump to it, but it looks like a bunch of tech geeks spouting on about nothing important.

Plus I don't like the fact that so many people consider it "addictive." Do a search for "Twitter" and "addictive" to see what I mean.

I hope you have fun with it and maybe later I'll look into it again -- I am not closed against it, I just haven't found anything worthwhile yet. (Its "pithiness" doesn't help, by the way! There's no substance.)


Are you Twittered into the Deeper Vaspers?


Adam Lasnik said...

You know, your DJ friend may be more right than you give him credit for.

I blog a bit. I twitter a bit. I read too many blog posts. And frankly, I (somewhat ironically / hypocritically) think that the world would probably be a better place if geeks (including you and me!) spent less time online and more time actually:
- Getting the things done that still persist on our to-do lists.
- Getting outside.
- Getting more exercise (besides moving our fingers).

Let's face it... we've perfected the art of navel gazing. And that's not necessarily something to brag about or be proud of.

> If I liked what I saw on Twitter
> I'd jump to it, but it looks like
> a bunch of tech geeks spouting on
> about nothing important.

Perceptive friend you have.

Maybe, instead of trying to persuade him, you should actually practice LISTENING. Might learn something. Perhaps you could even try something new offline that your friend admires, sacrificing some of your bloggy-reading or twittering time.

Ludditingly yours,

P.S. -- The same argument could be made about movies and even TV. Just because 1% of the stuff is life changing / amazing / whatever doesn't make spending 28+ hours a WEEK on it (the American average for just TV-watching-per-person) a worthwhile choice.

carrie said...

see, i love love love eavesdropping on random, mundane connversations and i used to know someone who had a police scanner or some kind of scanner where you could listen to people's phone conversations and i loved doing that. usu. they were about really boring stuff.

flic said...

Can you give a real, tangible example of good twitter? Not just beat-around-the-bush background marketing speak.

Thanks. Would be much appreciated.

steven edward streight said...

flic: Me? Give you? A real, tangible example? Of a "good" Twitter?

Twitter messages are digital, thus not tangible. I have never touched nor fondled at tweet. I have no idea what its chemical composition may be.

Ah, but one can explore on ones own, correct? And one can experiment and try to use new and emerging social media tools for ones own purposes.

One may examine the tool, and ignore what most others are doing with it, dis-embrace the stereotype, and notice the more effective messages and the tool users who seem to be doing something worthwhile, innovative, risky, crazy, or extreme.

Then, we can hope to think of ways that the social media tool can be used for Virginia Tech students, college security alerts, tornadoes, floods, keeping tab on children away at college, corporate project collaborations, political fundraising, issues awareness, social activism, peace rallies, etc.

Or we can be lazy, skeptical, morose, and wait for the pioneers to make their mistakes and triumphs, then try to play catch up.

flic said...

Steve- Thanks for your attempt at answering my question [in your 4/17/07 post].

If that's the example of good twitter, then I have tosay that I saw that advert-for-novel refrigerator website a long while ago, and did not need twitter to bump into it. (BTW, I have tried twitter, and it's an internet SMS service. That's fine enough. But that's all it is. Like you suggest, it depends on what one does with it. But quite frankly, twitter in itself is not art).

These days one does not need to constantly play with the newest gadgets in order to be not "lazy, skeptical, morose, and wait for the pioneers to make their mistakes and triumphs, then try to play catch up."

Maybe some us just don't live with our parents anymore and are pioneers in other fields.