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Will Twitter Kill Social Media?

Twitter could possibly be on the verge of mass acceptance…or bring about the downfall of social media, according to the signs we’ve been seeing.

  • Promotion by mass media: So suddenly, mainstream media like newspapers, TV news and talk shows are jumping on the twitter bandwagon, making it sound like the best thing since sliced bread. Just like they did with the internet back in the mid 1990s.
  • Overemphasis on the technology: So there’s been an overemphasis about the tech aspects of twitter, how you can build a following of 100,000 in a few days/weeks, how you’re able to mass msg them updates.
  • Celebrity buzz factor: Now everyone knows that the_real_shaq is well, the real shaq. And that other celebrities have their publicist, manager scraping old interviews and sending tweets out on their behalf, saying that the content is sent in the “spirit” of the celebrity. Authenticity/credibility fail.

But the bigger danger of social media, especially the new wave of twitter’s brand of new social media is that it could potentially be tethering you to your computer instead of freeing you.

Remember the crackberry, er, blackberry?

When blackberry addicts had it with them 24-7 and felt compelled to answer an email the moment it was received? Till now, I know of a number of affiliate managers who keep their blackberry at their bedside and wake up to answer emails the moment they come in.

Me, I’m in the process of cancelling my cellphone to be less accessible.

But here’s why I think twitter might be self-destructive – the design of the system is such that it’s like a 24-hour chatroom, with topics being constantly discussed and possibly buried in a matter of hours.

That means if you want to:

  • tap the buzz
  • be part of the flow
  • be part of the conversation

It means you need to tether yourself to the medium, you need to essentially be watching the channel during the 8-12 hours that the service is at its peak.

twitter kill social media

So it’s like watching TV, except that instead of being constrained by the content being broadcast by the television network, you’re at times held hostage to the content being broadcast by other users.

If anything, that’s the dark side of user-generated content.

You could read twitter updates on a delayed basis, that is hours or days after they were first broadcast and use twitter as a proxy RSS reader, however, it’d limit the conversations you’re able to conduct, unless they’re highly targeted in nature.

If social media, especially with the vanguard led by Twitter is to evolve to its next stage, it’ll require:

  • More flexible content management
  • Higher quality filtering and relevant updates

for users.

What do you think?

11 comments on Will Twitter Kill Social Media?

  1. Guillaume
    April 9, 2009 at 7:17 pm (4303 days ago)

    Well I think you should read the post of Robert Scoble about information overload: we are getting too much info in real time. So we need to develop new skills and new tools to cope with it. And each user has to define its own limits.

  2. Milo Wilson
    April 10, 2009 at 6:01 pm (4302 days ago)

    I have noticed that even on the Face book,Fliker,myspace type deal someone post 4000 photos of their vacations or wedding
    and makes it a waste of time looking for something or asingle photo posting among the 4000 photos

  3. Erica
    April 10, 2009 at 11:34 pm (4302 days ago)

    I agree, reading Twitter conversations all day can become an addiction and take over your entire day. You may not even participate in the conversations at times, just get sucked into reading them for hours.

  4. Chris Monty
    April 11, 2009 at 12:50 am (4302 days ago)

    I agree. I do sometimes feel chained to my laptop. It will be interesting to see if Twitter growth continues to explode the way it has.

  5. Pete Graham
    April 12, 2009 at 7:18 pm (4300 days ago)

    I agree with you, the problem with accessiblilty to everyone is the usual lack of quality control.

    What was the saying about an endless amount of monkeys and an endless amount of typewriters?

    Eventually one will write the complete works of shakespeare.

    The problem today is we have to read all the other s**t the monkeys
    twitter about!

    My advice, don’t follow anyone on Twitter, you will become an ‘enigma’

  6. gestational
    April 17, 2009 at 11:38 am (4296 days ago)

    many new blogger get a lot benefits and money from twitter….. twitter is great tools

  7. Peter
    April 21, 2009 at 3:17 am (4292 days ago)

    There are those who throw their 96″ color TVs out third floor windows to the accompaniment of various loud gutteral noises and vows never to watch again. But they are few.

    Twittering for business is turning out to be work like everything else, but with the added problem of perpetual addictive digression. Those teaching or enabling focus and discipline, or providing software that increases productivity, may find a niche.

    And of course, some will throw out Twitter altogether, while others will try and then taper off, and others still will relish the whole process. I suspect the majority will probably either cycle through periods of engagement and non-engagement or remain addicted, happy or not.

  8. Peter
    April 21, 2009 at 3:27 am (4292 days ago)

    I suspect that Twitter is here to stay despite the addiction to perpetual digression and time-suck problems. User types may become classifiable and targeted by marketers and cartoonists.

    I like your idea of filtering and, by implication, focus.

  9. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VtUfhK6CWA
    March 26, 2014 at 10:29 pm (2491 days ago)

    Neighborhood universities have a steer in training
    Spanish designed towards business office.

    Unquestionably motivation, working hard and all sorts of most of it,
    but which had been not it. a cat.

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