Hobnobbing with the Twitterati

So, week 4 it is.

I found the Phil Bradley piece interesting. He says that he uses Twitter as an information source, rather than as a leisure activity. I know what he means. Although I don’t (yet) use Twitter for work purposes, I find it’s great for keeping up with latest news, not exactly the intellectual heavyweights in my case I’m afraid, more likely updates from the Guardian Film and Music supplement, events at the London Jazz Festival or British Film Institute,¬† LDN_SW12 and LDN_EC1 following affairs near where I live and work, new postings from fellow music bloggers, etc etc.

I also find that Twitter can be tremendously entertaining, not because it lets you keep in touch with your friends–I’d tend to prefer to use Facebook for that anyway–but because you can “follow” anyone, however remote from your own experience (Barack Obama if you’re so inclined, Stephen Fry if you must) and hear their take on the issues of the day. I haven’t succumbed to the POTUS yet and have rejected Sir Stephen (tell you why in a while) but I’ve found that¬†journalist/broadcasters like Caitlin Moran and Danny Baker are good for a pithy rejoinder or two, as is the excellent Dr Samuel Johnson.

I know that there is a kind of etiquette which obliges you, when someone becomes your follower, to “follow” them back. I have to say that I tend to take Bradley’s view and *not* to do this unless the person in question is going to say something I’m interested in. There are a few people (friends as well as “celebrities”) who I’ve started to follow but then stopped.

This is normally because they tweet WAY TOO MUCH. I find it quite off-putting to be confronted with a screen full of tweets from the same person when I log on. Stephen Fry is a repeat offender here. Hence I rejected him at an early stage. Also friends of mine periodically use Twitter to have conversations between themselves which would be better held privately (not because they’re inappropriate, because they’re dull). Another reason to trim my “following” list.

I was interested to read, on the Twitter tools link, about the Buffer app. It seems that this might be useful for library accounts in that it would allow a member of staff to sit and key in a lot of tweets over, say, a half hour period, then release them gradually during the course of the day. This would avoid the scenario where some users are swamped with a lot of tweets all arriving at the same time of day while others, who happen to have logged on earlier or later see none at all (unless they actively look for them).

Interesting also to read that number 10 on the Twitter tools list, “BinReminded”, is considered ideal for people who “live inside Twitter”. I’m really hoping I never get to *that* stage…

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About libreryblogger

I'm the Copyright and Digital Resources Officer working in a London university library. You're jealous, aren't you?
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One Response to Hobnobbing with the Twitterati

  1. RMG says:

    Interesting post. I agree that you don’t have to follow people back, and also it’s annoying when you get bathces of tweets from the same source in one go (the various Guardian tweets do this).
    Some peole use twitter just to gather news and don’t tweet themselves, so it really is whatever works for you. I do know several librarians who tweet for work, but it;s always a mixture of work and other stuff – which is what works for me too. This might change if one had studnets you were teaching following you. You’d need to think about tweets more carefully, but there are studies which show that this engages students and that they therefore get better marks.

    Interesting to see what you think of linked in and how it compares to facebook.
    Rowena 23 Things team

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