the value of twitter

OK, I used to think twitter was stupid. I imagined it as just a big collection of facebook status updates. Personally, I couldn’t care less about you going to the grocery store. But then I went to the ANS conference in Atlanta and realized what the big deal was. You can embed tags in your twitter posts, using the # symbol. For instance, at the ANS conference, if you say something and put #ans09 in it, everyone who searches #ans09 can see what everyone who said #ans09 has posted. So you go there and it’s like: “hey a group of us here at #ans09 are going to max’s down the street. come on by!” You try #fremontfair for the solstice parade happening in seattle tomorrow and it’s all “PCC RT @amyhale: Getting prepped to live-blog, tweet tomorrow’s #Seattle #Fremontfair the “Center of the Universe”! Watch 4 updates + audio too!”

Another feature: you can do it all on SMS on your phone. So imagine a group of people going out. If they all set their phones to “follow” the same person, he or she can just say: “ok going to Brown Jug now.” Or “going to Bab’s now.”  and everyone will get texts with that info. That’s actually new and useful communication right there.

So sign up for it. Do some searches for stuff you’re interested in. Up-to-date collective knowledge is at hand.

Actually the real reason I checked it out was all the buzz about the Iranians using it to organize protests. Apprently the US state department asked twitter to delay a scheduled maintenance window so the Iranians wouldn’t be left in the dark. Cool.

BTW, if you’re all interested in whether or not I’m at the grocery store, I’m partofthething on twitter.

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