“It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Twit-ter . . .”

April 6, 2009 at 7:44 PM (Musings) (, , , , )

For those of you who aren’t familiar, Twitter is “a real-time short messaging service that works over multiple networks and devices” (twitter.com).  As one Tweeter put it (whom I can’t remember, so unfortunately I can’t credit him or her), “If blogs, Facebook statuses and chat rooms were to have an orgy, Twitter would be the love child.”  I couldn’t agree more.  Below is a screenshot of my Twitter Feed:

My Twitter Feed.  Good stuff, right?

I love Twitter – as you may notice from that little section on the right – and find it useful for getting PR news, Boston news, friend news, promoting my blog and friends’ events, and chatting with my friends.  However, occasionally all the Tweets I receive can be a bit overwhelming (as one Twitter glossary phrases it, “Twitterhea”), so I’ll use TweetDeck to filter mass Tweets relevantly.  I was not thrilled when the new Facebook homepage took on a similar look:

Suspicious resemblance, no?

I have decided that there’s too much going on with Facebook for this layout to be a good idea.  For starters, I don’t care about all of my friends on Facebook enough to know about each of their updates (and considering some of the mundane things I post on Facebook, I’m pretty sure many of my Facebook friends could say the same of me).  For the entree, Facebook has so many more features than Twitter.  I can’t even remember what the old Facebook looked like before the News-Feed debuted, but I do recall that few users considered it an improvement.  However, at least the News Feed offered updates that may have been more interesting than “Chris is buying socks… finally.”  I could see what events my friends were attending, who had added a new mutual friend, and other stalkeresque such-like.  I doubt Facebook will revert back to the News Feed, but perhaps it would consider an option to filter updates, because, really, who cares about that guy who sat in the second row in freshman year biology that no one ever actually spoke to?  For Pete’s sake, he claims to have lost a contact lens!

Today, I decided to toodle through TechCrunch and discovered that yet another social networking site had fallen in-line with the Twitter doctrine: FriendFeed.  I don’t use FriendFeed, so I can’t comment extensively, but it looks like it could be TwitterExtra:

Come on!  It doesn’t even limit you to strict, 140-character copy!  And what’s worse, according to TechCrunch, the page updates constantly.  Again, it looks like FriendFeed offers too much to benefit from the Twitter layout, but not having an account, I can’t comment with confidence.  TechCrunch posted a video of the “short version” of the demo they saw, but when I saw that it was 17 minutes, I decided that I had better things to do.  However, I will post it below for those of you who have the time and interest.

In the meantime, I have to say that Twitter, although subject to the sarcastic criticism of folks like John Stewart (unfortunately I can’t remember the episode where he poked fun so I can’t link to it), is on the rise.  Less and less frequently do I receive the response “What the [expletive] is a Twitter?” when I mention it, and more and more often do I see and hear it referenced on the rare occasions when I’m near a television set.  And now, it’s even leaking into other social networking sites.  Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the up and coming social networking deity:

Today’s Tunes
“The Melee,” Beastie Boys
“Drink Whiskey and Shut Up,” Brian Setzer
“Falling In Love At a Coffee Shop,” Landon Pigg
“In the Light,” Led Zeppelin
“The Boy’s Doin’ It (Carl Craig Remix),” Carl Craig & Hugh Masekela
“Standin’ Round Crying,” Eric Clapton
“(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” The Rolling Stones
“Zoot Suit Riot,” Cherry Poppin’ Daddies
“Plastic Stars,” Freezepop
“Closer,” Joshua Radin
“The Ballad of John and Yoko,” The Beatles

Fun fact: I didn’t realise that linking back to TechCrunch’s post would earn me a spot on the site (if perhaps only briefly).  Check it out!

I'm famous!  I'm famous!  Okay, not really, but it's still cool to see.

Don’t worry: I promise I won’t let it get to my head (I know it was automatically generated). This time.

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