Blogs vs Twitter II

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Had an A-Ha! moment on the Blogs vs. Twitter debate this week, late in the day Thursday catching up on the day’s twitter traffic after a mildly productive afternoon.

I’m thinking of Twitter like a stream and the blogosphere as lakes and oceans.  Fishing moving waters requires different techniques than still waters.  You have different gear, different approaches.  It would never occur to me to try to catch every fish that swims by.  Just the one that happens to be in the pool that i can reach.  just. right. then.

I am also a slow learner.  So I’m going to give an example.  The material is political, but my point is about the social media tools.

  1. First, I noticed a tweet by a Brit I follow re: a muslim cleric spouting off in support of spousal abuse.  Political topic, trying to stay away from that on this blog for now.  A quick retweet @JohnShepard, don’t think much about it.
  2. Over on JohnScout, I had written a post touching on the newly inaugurated president’s time as a Cub Scout in Indonesia.  This islamic nation has the largest number of Scouts in the world. I had referenced @JoshuaGodinez‘s blog  in that post, then saw him tweet about muslim Scouts in Scotland and their special Oath.  Hmm.  Maybe a topic for a follow-up post, so a quick retweet.
  3. Then, I noticed another headline on Geert Wilders.  For a few months I’ve seen the Dutch parliamentarian in the news.  He made a film, Fitna, about the dark side of Islam.  Many people are unhappy;  Thursday there were several tweets about charges filed by Dutch courts.  Again, at face a political topic, but Freedom of Speech and cultural issues—this is getting closer to what I’m willing to tackle at jcshepard.com.  However, by this time I was late for dinner.  So I did the re-tweet thing.

It’s not about the ends but the means. 

Perhaps the world is a better place for me not taking time to blog this political topic.  Who knows, perhaps we averted a new Crusade.  Either way, the Twitterverse is good for quickly bringing in data and sharing it.  Not alot of processing is going on in 140 words let alone 140 characters.  This blog is about 400 words, more or less.  It takes time to process data into information.

I used twitter like a stream.  Topics come, topics go, here’s the link, read it and see what you think.

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7 Comments

  1. boyandgirlscoutsdotcom said,

    23 January 2009 at 18:25

    I know I found this a fascinating topic. 🙂 I’m trying to build up awareness of my blog so I use twitter like a net and capture everyone in my streams of interest. I’ve got my Scouting stream and my political stream. Unless the person is a nutcase or so far out of my political orb that I will never care about anything they tweet about I’ll follow them and hope for a follow-back. And yes, I do like watching which way the water is swirling to see what trends are emerging.

  2. JC said,

    23 January 2009 at 23:20

    “If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter.” -Cicero
    Sometimes it is easier to slam out a blog than relay anything worth worrying over in 140 words. Then again….

  3. Sacha. said,

    27 January 2009 at 06:58

    Isn’t it just a reflection of modern day society to be maintaining relationships through social networking? In this current day living, where interpersonal relationships are not as intimate as they used to be, it looks like everyone is looking for the quick rush. Meet someone through whatever social network, exchange a few words, then basically forget about them until you receive the automatically generated ‘Hey! You didn’t forget about his birthday, now, did ya?’.
    I don’t know. Maybe some people need this sort of contact to make them feel alive: I’ve never had this many birthday wishes as last year. Yet my doormat only catched two cards. Somehow it made me feel sad instead of alive.
    And isn’t it just way easier to end a relationship on a social network than in real-life? You just click the delete button and they’re gone. You won’t ever hear something from them, since they probably just shrug their shoulders or won’t even notice.
    I think blogging is not primarily about social networking. It’s basically more a billboard to expose your thoughts and feelings. Either to ‘spread joy to the world’ or to ‘find your inner self’. Guess blogging is more long-term than social networking.

  4. JC said,

    27 January 2009 at 16:20

    Expose your thoughts and feelings to the world. Why would I want to do that again?

    I hadn’t considered what these things tell us about the larger world around us. It makes sense though. We trade quantity of relationships for quality. It’s how many Twitter followers, how many FaceSpace friends that equal Social Media influence. Walmart-ization of the world.

    So we look for ways to resist. to reinvent. to revitalize. to make lemonade from the Web 2.0 lemon. Or sweet tea, whatever your flavor.

  5. Sacha. said,

    27 January 2009 at 19:55

    I couldn’t have formulated it better than you did. You’re right: it’s obvious the social networking stuff is about quantity and blogging is more about quality. Bloggers don’t have to make ‘friends’ or find ‘followers’. They can just do whatever they want.
    We don’t have to be ‘correct’ because we’re scared to loose friends. Since we don’t have any to start with. Nor is it our goal to obtain them.
    Sigh. It’s almost Zen.
    Blogging is such an anti-social relief!

  6. JC said,

    28 January 2009 at 14:57

    How about a blog about Twitter!

    Twitter Followers: Quantity or Quality?
    http://www.twitip.com/twitter-followers-quantity-or-quality/

  7. JC said,

    7 February 2009 at 03:05

    It was bound to happen, but I ticked off somebody combining what I thought a mild provocation on the BHO post over on JohnScout. I deserve the comment, and the Scouter was very polite putting forth his opinion. http://johnscout.wordpress.com/2009/01/22/scout-in-chief/#comment-8

    Gonna have to do up a post on the many faces we show either place…


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