Monday, April 27, 2009

The Tweet Life



"How Tweet it is," says New York Magazine of this growing pandemic. If you haven't heard, or have been living in a remote place with no human contact, twitter and FaceBook status updates are taking over the world. According to FaceBook creator Mark Zuckerberg, the 35-54 age group is the fastest growing demographic on the social network; your grandparents are probably on Twitter.

"What on earth is Grandma doing on FaceBook" is what your going to say when you get the friend request...don't say I didn't warn you.

For starters, you could blame Oprah for having Zuckerberg on her show explaining the wonders of FaceBook, how to set up a page as well as "how easy it is!" So think twice about approving those tagged pictures of body shots off Carlos in Puerto Rico from Spring Break.

Twitter or tweeting, whatever it is, is an addiction short of a syringe and a crusty band aid and status Updates on facebook are the equivalent to blinking.

When is socializing too much though? I log onto my FaceBook account to find out that so and so loves broccoli and so and so hates rain. Yeah, I get it. We are all guilty. I share my opinions in a cleverly discreet yet overbearing "look at me" way as well. Again, all guilty.

Maybe I would update more if I had a cool phone with Internet access, but I don't. It is acceptable to me if you are updating from your mobile phone more often than not about a cloud that looks like a cupcake or an expression of joy.

It's least respectable, however, if the updates are coming from a PC every 45 minutes. Then a question of abysmal concern comes into play. Either you are lugging your laptop around to the grocery store and class or you never leave your room. Cue raised eyebrow.

If I had an IPhone I would update more; I'll admit it right here. But I am cheap and am okay with the generosity that ATT has to give me the wonderful phone that I received when I renewed my contract last spring. A phone that won't even support stupid SMS messages from Twitter. Yeah, I tried.

Twitter is kind of amazing in itself though. It is a page where a person just banters on and on. It is kind of strange to watch it progress...not knowing half the time what the person is even talking about: inside jokes, possible schizophrenic anecdotes or angst towards a bad date.

Celebrity voyeurism is huge on Twitter. In fact, I think Twitter is more of a celebrity stalking site than social networking. Reading Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore's posts to each other is both awkward and gratifying in a sheepish "peeping-Tom" sort of way.


All this leaves me with is one question: will Journalism turn into twitter updates? I mean, we are already making the vast switch to online Journalism; people want it now and want it fast. Readers are reading less. They only want the headlines and pictures. Regardless, half the time people don't read past the jump.

So will news just end up a twitter message soon enough? It would be a change, but it would be hard facts and fast; exactly what this instant gratification generation demands.

No one is reading the newspaper at breakfast anymore. Instead, they are whipping out their laptops and reading most likely what is on their homepages headlines; be it Yahoo, MSN, AOL or whatever. I know CNN and everyone else is on there but I just see it coming into play a lot more pretty soon.

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