Monday, April 13, 2009

Comments on Twitter

So this morning's Musing Monday question got me to thinking a bit more about this idea of cyber community and how we try to connect with perfect strangers with whom we know we share common interests. I know many of you out there also use Twitter. I jumped on the band wagon and signed up for an account. I actually managed to figure out how to follow others - and in turn, I have had some of them follow me (I have also had several total strangers - whom I do not know nor am I sure I have anything in common with at all - choose to follow me - and I have not reciprocated). Beyond that however, I am somewhat at a loss.

I like the concept of Twitter. I like the fact that I can quickly update my status - and must do so in 140 characters or less (I can sometimes be a bit verbose - if you haven't noticed). I like the fact that Twitter allows me to connect not just with fellow friends, relatives, bloggers, and acquaintances -- but also with "professionals" -- in my case, authors and publishing companies. I am, however, a bit uncomfortable replying to other tweets. I feel like I am intruding on a private conversation that just happens to be taking place in cyberspace for all to see.

So how many of you Twitter? Do you use Twitter to only update personal status? Do you use Twitter to carry on conversations? IF so, do you worry about butting in where you are not wanted (or is that just my own little self-esteem issue)? Do youTtwitter with professionals? (I personally am not certain that they would care to hear from lil ole' me). If so, what has been your experience? Do they seem receptive? Do you use Twitter for other reasons? I know some of you post updates to your blogs --- have you noticed an increase in blog traffic?

So many questions - and I am sorry. I feel like I have been living under a rock for a number of years and I have just been brought into the light! I have only recently discovered the blogosphere where others enjoy reading as much (and some even more) than I do; a twitter community of 140 character conversations (I was just getting the hang of Facebook); and a whole other universe of ARCs and Giveaways and Challenges. I think my mind is on sensory overload!

15 comments:

bermudaonion said...

You do have a lot of questions! I think I actually use Twitter to carry on conversations more than to update my personal status. I do interact with professionals - I think they are on Twitter because they want to hear what we think. Also, putting in your 2 cents worth isn't butting in - people can send a direct message if they don't want the whole world to see what they're saying.

Christine said...

I tweet for most of the reasons you've listed: updating my status, pointing out things that I think are interesting but otherwise too short to blog about, talking with friends and family (and others), and occasionally putting up links to new blog posts.

I'd encourage you to both follow and talk to people you don't know personally. One of the advantages of twitter as a social platform is that it's very easy to form online relationships with people who might be outside your usual networks. Talking with strangers is fun -- and some might even become friends! Follow widely -- I follow lots of strangers who pique my interest, or say interesting and/or amusing things. Some of them follow me back.

Jump in, the water's fine!

(Me on twitter: http://twitter.com/shereadsbooks)

Natasha @ Maw Books said...

Twitter is definitely about more than updating your status. Just like blog comments, I get a little thrill when I see a reply come in. It's about the interaction. Twitter is a great place to connect with professionals in the book blogging community. I've seen several cases of publicists, authors, booksellers and book bloggers coming together to discuss issues that benefit both of us. I don't think that could happen anywhere else.

I have found a lot of new readers of my blog have come from Twitter. Also, Twitter is a great place for me to put out links to other articles, etc. It kind of takes the place of link posts in a way.

As far as following other people back. I just checked. I have 635 people who follow me but I don't follow them back. Yeah, so obviously I don't feel the need to follow them all back. It would simply overwhelm me. I'm picky. But there are the 125 people I follow that I wish followed me. :)

Red lady-Bonnie said...

I haven't jumped on the bandwagon with Twitter or Facebook yet. Geesh, I'm behind the times for sure! I'm intrigued by Twitter and this discussion has piqued my interest. I've been thinking of joining and just may do that soon.

mattviews said...

I pondered at this question a lot when I was an inchoate blogger. I wish to be able to reply to all the comments, given that the comments are open-ended. I also want to acknowledge all my readers and not to make them feel they are ignored. The etiquette of dealing with comments also lead to a bigger question of when and how to link a blog. Anyway, I appreciate your taking time to share your thoughts on my blog. :)

The Book Resort said...

Oh, no!!! Twitter... Jinkies. lol.

Margot said...

I'm so glad you asked this question as it's a question of mine also. You/we got some good answers here. I've also been just standing back and reading Twitter but have been fearful of jumping in lest I interrupt or look like a fool. My next question is what to talk about. I have no trouble talking face to face with anyone but on Twitter - I don't know. Again, sure glad you raised the question.

Kim said...

Well Molly, you have left me in the dust technology wise. I can barely keep up with blogging so I feel that Twitter will just push me over the edge. Plus, I feel like since most of my day is spent at work where talking to tweeters would be frowned upon, ;), I just don't know if it is worth it. When I come home, I like to connect with my blog.
As a side note, I read on a fellow blogger's site today a comment left by a computer geek friend of hers, where he said that blogging and email is very close to becoming outdated! I say to that, "Call me old fashioned!"
I will be following your musings about twitter with interest.
*smiles*
Kij

Literary Feline said...

My husband introduced me to the "block" feature on twitter and assured me that using it for advertisers (I'm talking about the ones that have me scratching my head as to why they would follow me) was not a bad thing. LOL I'm still uncertain with Twitter, feeling like every comment I leave isn't worthy. I do better at just lurking, I'm afraid. Like you, I worry about interrupting conversations already in progress.

I do find it hard to stick to 140 characters sometimes, I admit. LOL

Melissa said...

I've had a hard time getting super active on Twitter but do like being able to have my blog posts update there, and of course I enjoy chatting with fellow book-blogging buddies. :-) I guess I haven't had a problem barging in on some conversations, but I probably do more lurking than anything else :-)

farmlanebooks said...

I only joined up a few weeks ago, so am still learning too. I have enjoyed my experience so far, and have found lots of great blogs that I wouldn't have seen otherwise.

I don't think I'm following you on twitter yet - what's your twitter name? Mine is farmlanebooks if you fancy following me!

farmlanebooks said...

Just realised I'm already following you - I didn't recognise your twitter name!

Trish said...

I still haven't figured out what the draw to twitter is, but I know that more and more people are joining. Don't worry about the questions--ask and someone will surely answer--bloggers are great that way.

Jenners said...

I pretty much have the same question as you ... I didn't join yet because I wasn't sure of what to do with it or if people would be interested in reading my "tweets." Loved reading this post and your comments!

Suey said...

Speaking of joining conversations, I am definately getting to this one late!

Anyway, sometimes I wonder what the point of Twitter is too, but I'm finding that it's fun, even if it does seem at times that I'm just eavesdropping on everyone else's conversations. Sometimes I will jump in, because that's what it's for, right? But most of the time, I'm just "listening."

The thing I find especially fun about Twitter is following celebrities... and authors. And to think that you can send them a tweet, and they just might actually read it!

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