A couple of years ago I was asked if I used Twitter, and I replied that broadcasting my life to all and sundry would be a list of “wake up, make coffee, work, make coffee, work, make coffee, eat, work, make coffee, work, sleep”

Not only dull to my followers, but I presumed that was what most other people wrote.

Dull, dull, dull.

Today, it sits in the background on my web browser as I am working from home and need a bit of “office gossip” to stay sane in the silence. I’ve even written my own Twitter application – partly to make it easier for me to use, and partly because I hoped it would the next Tweetdeck. Never took off and is no longer being developed/bug fixed, although I still use it.

This blog post – containing 480 words – marks my 20,000th short message sent into the Twitter environment.

This blog post is cunningly crafted so that the Tweet that will be automatically sent to say I wrote it – containing 35 letters – will be my 20,000th Tweet on Twitter. Perfect narcissism.

Why do I use Twitter?

Because I want everyone to know when I am drinking coffee, working or eating.

Nope, not really, although those do slip in occasionally – but mainly as an outlet for random musings, a way of sharing interesting news I come across or weblinks without writing a lengthy blog post to explain why I think the website is interesting.

Because I quickly realised that an awful lot of really quite interesting people are on there and they offer insights into their world, but also on their terms. I follow loads of political, news and current affairs and it really keeps me up to date with world news such that even my own voracious consumption of current affairs is amply sated.

And the occasional celebrity – who doesn’t follow Stephen Fry – but to be honest, when Twitter recommends a celebrity with a “verified account” to follow, I more often than not have to use Google to find out who the person is. Then I am usually none the wiser as to why I would follow them. I find Giles Coren‘s sweary, but very honest rants vastly more interesting than the tedious plugging of music shows by the PR person allocated the job of keeping a top celebrity account fresh.

Because quite frankly, it is quite a good way of promoting my blog and events guide to the wider public.

But mainly, because despite the restriction of 140 characters per message, it is surprisingly devoid of the use of text speak shorthand. Some appears, but compared to places such as Facebook, which frankly might as well be written in a foreign language for all the sense they make, Twitter is uncommonly good at promoting Good English in its twitterings.

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  1. Congratulations Ian!

    Here’s to the next 20,000!

    Many thanks for all your thoughts – they help make my day and are very much appreciated in E7.

    Best wishes, MIke.

  2. I too as quite against Twitter before I got on it – but I love it now and it’s really helped make interesting connections and grow my business. I’m glad you’ve stuck with it – it’s how I discovered your blog and I love your tweets. Keep it up! Onward 100,000!

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