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BOB'S BLOG: Twitter still has its doubters

By Bob Wood
July 16, 2014 - 0 comments

My wife wants to know:

“Am I frittering when I’m twittering?”  

The question leaves me on edge.  Like that time when a family member asked what I wanted to be when I grew up – a tough question indeed for a guy celebrating his 24th birthday.

Anyway, that was a long time ago but still…

Let’s get back to Twitter.

First of all.  It is tweeting not twittering, dear.

And lots of people are doing it.  Important people, with important things to say. 

In fact, Twitter just celebrated its eighth birthday. For readers who don’t know about Twitter,  we’ve created a little fact sheet below.

The essence of Twitter is the tweet, a short message that cannot exceed 140 characters.  That works out to about two short sentences.  I figure that Ernest Hemingway might not have written Old Man and the Sea if Twitter had been around to distract him in Havana in 1951.

In my spare time after I had done all the chores/most of the chores,  I took a look at a more or less random sample of FYI followers to address the twittering/frittering allegation. 

What are they saying?  Are they just killing time or making important contributions to the world? What do you think?

Singer Kim Mitchell of Patio Lanterns fame (@TheKimMitchell) provided information on an upcoming concert in Oromocto. 

Toronto’s Soulpepper Theatre (@Soulpepper) is delighted and gives itself a well-deserved pat on the back for the seven Dora Awards it received for its production of Of Human Bondage.

• We're just blown away. SEVEN @DoraAwards for Of Human Bondage! Congrats to the cast, crew & all the nominees.

@kerseyknowsbest describes herself as a “staffer, publicist, lefty, social media addict and lover of all things inappropriate.” Steph Kelly, the creator,reminds me, as if I needed a reminder, that a major sporting event is on.

• First oil change on the new car. Just me and a handful of angry men in shorts and dress shoes watching #WorldCup. #BusinessCasual

Singer Ron Sexsmith (@RonSexsmith) was featured in FYI not long ago – see HERE.  Sexsmith is in California recording an album and seems to use twitter to unload bad jokes (really bad jokes) on his followers.

But they make me laugh. How about? 

• So glad that the fashion police have no real jurisdiction RS


• My Doctor says I should try to lose a few pounds. But I have a lot on my plate RS

So there is a sampling.  You can judge.  Am I wasting my time? Am I frittering when I’m twittering? 

For what it is worth here is one final thought from Oscar Wilde, a man who would have been a major force on twitter.

“Time is a waste of money.”

Twitter FAQ

• It is an online social networking and microblogging service that enables users to send and read short text messages, called "tweets".

• A tweet can contain a maximum of 140 characters.

• Tweets can contain hashtags (the# symbol) used to mark keywords or topics in the Tweet, in case others are searching.

• Twitter claims to have 255-million active monthly users. 

• These users generate 500-million tweets per day.

• The people who run Twitter say it is “the best way to connect with people, express yourself and discover what's happening.”

• Twitter went public last November at $26 per share.  It is trading at close to $40 now.

• You can follow those you are interested in on Twitter.  Some measure your success on Twitter by the number of followers you have. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has 486,000 followers.  Justin Bieber has 52.9-million.

• Forever Young is on Twitter at @FYI_Magazine. I am on Twitter at @timberwood24.

Bob Wood is a housing and poverty advocate and former two-term Burlington City Councillor who has built a bed-and-breakfast with his wife on Lake Erie. 


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