Of all the masturbatory ego-fluffers on the Web, nothing chafes me worse than Twitter.
Twitter, as I’m sure you’ve heard, is the insta-blogging, micro-posting, always-on textual dashboard of the Web 2.0 set. Not content with blogging — itself a microchunked, short-form version of diary keeping — we’ve taken to journaling the minute-by-minute factlets and factoids of our bite-sized lives.
Ugh. That’s like Dodgeball, but boring.
You remember Dodgeball, right? The SMS tool that Google bought that lets you tell your friends when you were out doing something social so they could come join you? Right. That’s fun. That promotes social activity. Twitter doesn’t. Twitter is a 24/7 news feed of other people’s cube farms. Not interested. Not at all.
But wait, you say: Twitter is a great news feed for events like SXSW, and for getting links, and for keeping in touch. It’s like instant messaging, but public!
Sure, I get it. It’s a message board for BlackBerry-toting tech zombies. And the majority of posts I’ve seen include the blabberspeak mumblegum language of incessant now-ness:
LaughingSquid: “up, barely, coffee soon”
jidnet: “just woke up.”
daveboob: “Watching a bulldozer outside with Sam.”
Is it really so necessary to get a constant update of the world around you? Is it necessary to live your life by publishing it online at all times? Do you really need to follow Robert Scoble and his merry band of 1004 followers as they overping you with everydayness? Well then, godspeed.
Admitted: There’s a certain poetry to the river of text. It’s an ad hoc haiku.
Also admitted: Between gmail IM, AIM, MySpace and my cell phone, I have enough presence apps in my life. I don’t need you to know what I’m doing, and I certainly don’t care what the rest of you are doing at every moment, either.
I’ll try out Twitter this week. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe Twitter marks the unavoidable direction of constant media. In fact, I’m sure it does. But it’s a part of the constant media stream I’d like to steer clear of, if only to save what’s left of my personal space from yours.