Meeting on the ledge

(or why I don't get out much…..)

Twitter and pointless babble

There’s a wonderful story on the BBC news website about a survey by Pear Analytics indicating that 40% of messages on Twitter are ‘pointless babble’, 37% of messages are conversational ( ie they might be more easily conducted by email or instant messaging) and only 9% is of ‘pass-along’ value (ie it might be more effectively transmitted as a blog). As a Twitter sceptic  I’m surprised the babble figure is as low as that…..  Admittedly surveys have shown that blogs are not without their faults, but for me the fact that there are several long-standing blogs I monitor via Bloglines indicates that the medium works for me.  It may be my age, but even as a self-proclaimed  Internet-native I’m still to find any reason to use Twitter…..

Possibly the added value of Twitter is that the 140 character word limit fits nicely onto a mobile phone screen – a new form of texting, in other words. That would explain why it doesn’t attract me as much as others, as I discovered the Internet long before I got my first mobile.  In which case, as mobile phones grown more sophisticated and get larger screens, will Twitter move to longer messages or will the ‘Twitterati’ move on?


August 17, 2009 Posted by | General | , | Leave a comment

Govt goes Twitter…

Most amused to read this morning that the Cabinet Office is urging other government departments to start twittering. It is all to improve its communication apparently. Even better, although Twitter is limited to 140 characters, this guidance has come out in a 20 page document…..

I’m afraid I’m rather sceptical of the idea. I don’t think many civil servants, used to producing the massive volumes of paperwork that fuel most bureaucracies, could limit themselves to 140 characters. And if they did, how would the rest of us find the facts behind the political spin? It seems to me more like the govt is trying to appear to be keeping up with current trends without fully understanding them (maybe better than sitting back, doing things the same way as it alway has and trying to ignore them, as it often does!). Most twitter feeds (and most blogs) don’t last more than a few days or a few weeks as their authors either get tired of writing them, or realise that nobody is reading them. Information overflow is forcing us all to limit what we follow, and positive spin from govt depts wouldn’t be my priority.  Twitter is just the current trend, and like Facebook is going to become just another part of the Internet revolution once the next trend comes along. Only when that happens will we see whether Twitter has lasting value. The trick is to identify the next trend….

July 28, 2009 Posted by | General | | Leave a comment


As someone who never uses one word where 160 would do, I’ve never been convinced by Twitter. But now I am.

April 23, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment