Twitter has found a place in our age along with Facebook and other great social media giants. More than a billion Tweets go out every week. That’s a lot of communicating, but at only 140 characters per Tweet. It’s essentially writing a text to your followers to say what you are up to.
Some would say that Twitter is redundant next to Facebook, and it is just one more way narcissistic people can feed their egos. Fifty followers “care” about what I had for lunch today. Do they really need to know all the minute details of your life though? That aside, Twitter thrives on people’s desire to know those little details.
Twitter has made internet communication faster than it’s ever been. Back when all we had was email, it seemed so fast, then texting and Instant Messaging showed up and made email seem slow, now Twitter is showing them all up. Everyone who subscribes to your Twitter account will see your updates and can respond as soon as they see it.
Twitter is like one part blog, one part message forum. The site proclaims to be a microblog site, using their 140 character Tweets, but the way that others can chime in and add their ideas to yours in real time makes it read more like a message board.
Twitter has been useful in other aspects than just the minutiae of our lives, but also breaking news. Rather than waiting for the news to come on, you can hear about it as it is happening. Whenever a major even is happening in the world, you can bet that someone is going to Tweet about it. When Osama bin Laden was killed in 2011 Twitter exploded with over 5,000 Tweets per second!
Twitter is more of a tool than a social media. It doesn’t have a lot of fancy features; it isn’t all bells and whistles, it’s simply meant to update people on your life, or the life of your business or organization. It just happens to do its job very well and people use it to their advantage.
There are hundreds of third-party apps to enhance your Twitter experience if you choose. Ways to filter your photos, advanced search options, etc. It was even users who began to use the @ symbol in order to tag a person in a Tweet. Therefore if Doctor Who appreciates a comment by a fan they can tag them in the reply so the fan is sure to read it.
Hashtags were yet another user-driven idea so that you can label your Tweets so that Twitter can sort them and people can search for them. If I want to see posts about Benedict Cumberbatch’s cheekbones, I can search or it and any post that has that hashtag will appear in my search. In this way Twitter has not only revolutionized the way we communicate on the internet, but also the way we intercommunicate with our social media.