Sunday, May 31, 2009

Twittergarten

Do you remember in kindergarten, when you learned about sharing, listening to others when they are speaking and sharing what you think and feel politely? Welcome to Twitter! In a world that has become so sex driven, real human connection has become lost. Twitter is getting us back to fundamentals of connecting to others through the sharing of thoughts and ideas minus the distraction of superficial physical connection. Employing the communication skills you were taught in kindergarten will take you far in the Twitter world.

In my post Twitter Freak, I discussed the brilliance of the 140 character limit on Twitter. The fact that Twitter asks "what are you doing" is missing the mark in my opinion and I'm convinced that Twitter is the result of a bunch of developers who got lucky and created a forum that has taken on a life of it's own. But as far as the greater good is concerned... kudos! Because along with increasing the efficiency of our speech, Twitter is also creating a real-time environment for real, personal and beneficial connection, relearning what we as a society have gotten very far from.

The whole forum is run on a follower system. I love this system. If you don't communicate well, you are unfollowed (what I lovingly refer to as being voted off the island). If you do communicate well, everyone jumps on the #followfriday bandwagon telling all their friends that they need to hear what you have to say. But what makes a good tweeter? REAL connection is the answer. If you think that you are going to log on to Twitter once and have a million followers by days-end, you better think again. The same superficial devices you may have been using to win friends and influence people, doesn't work in the Twitter world. You have to come prepared with real thoughts and a willingness to contribute to the on-going conversations in a real way; at the same time respectful to the fact that this is an open forum and your audience is EVERYONE! If you can't listen and share respectfully... you won't make it here! I believe the effects of Twitter are going to be great and I wish them to be long lasting. The unfortunate thing is that there is going to be some growing pains.

People who have difficulties learning how to communicate will struggle, offend many, and then wonder why they hate Twitter so much. If you are someone who is easily offended, don't bother registering. Everyone has differing opinions on Twitter and if you can't participate in the conversation without personally attacking someone... you won't be successful on Twitter. Then there will be others who just can't seem to connect. They will spend their entire Twitter experience giving everyone a play by play of what is happening in their day holding back every bit of who they are as a person all because Twitter asked, "What are you doing?" Or the people who think Twitter is a forum to sell something. Failure to invest yourself on Twitter is failure on Twitter. And finally, there are the people who are sex driven. These people have taken every forum out there and morphed it into some sort of perversion. How sad that that's all their lives consist of. I believe that you've met your match with Twitter. While I don't think vermin can be completely eradicated, I do believe that the follow/unfollow system is a brilliant mechanism to keep them at bay.

Now for the fun that is Twitter. I believe that the explosion that has become Twitter is a result of society's craving for interpersonal connection. I mean connecting with people at their heart. And you win on Twitter when you are respectful to others, are willing to share, clearly communicate what you think and feel and allow others to do the same. These are all basic communication skills that should have been taught in kindergarten but have been lost somewhere along the way. Twitter is bringing it back. The only thing missing from Twitter is nap-time (oh, and a teacher who knows the lesson plan... come on Twitter!).
*I'm going out on a limb to say that I believe Twitter will single-handedly be the reason for the divorce rate to plummet.... I got a $5 spot on that. Anyone else want into the pot??? Connecting to the inner person is where it's at people!!! THAT is real love and happiness!!!


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