Monday, January 26, 2009

Why Twitter?

I started using Twitter around the middle of last year as an experiment to see what the fuss was about. The idea of micro-blogging seemed banal to me, I couldn't understand the popularity of Twitter so decided to give it a go. Needless to say I have been sucked in by it for the same reason most other people. It provides a platform for effortless communication. I can ask things and get real replies in seconds, there is no pressure to read or reply to messages and I can tune in or out at my leisure.

Being on Twitter is like being at party (without the cocktails), there is a lot of idle chat that you can ignore but occasionally you pick up something useful or interesting. According to Robert Winston, participating in social engagements is one of the most taxing activities for our brain. Twitter shields us from those complex social exchanges and allows people to communicate their thoughts as they have them any time any place. I love using Twitter in London since its a great way to kill time while queuing (which is one of the top past times for Londoners).

Twitter may seem a little introverted to the outsider, but I now know more about my friends and the people that I meet than I could have possibly learned through normal communication channels. If I meet colleagues we talk about work, but on Twitter I also find out if they enjoy snowboarding, what movies they like or articles they find interesting. Twitter enables us to engage in a wider social network in a meaningful way.