Category: Social Media
So over at "What Would Dad Say", GL Hoffman (author of Dig Your Job: Keep it or Find a New One) has asked readers to post their six-word resumes. By 1 January 2009.
With no time to waste, here's mine:
Connecting social media and user assistance. (I think it could have more "punch"...I'll have to work on that.)
(My personal six-word meme is Playing the hand I was dealt.)
What are your six-word memes?
We try to get to Boston's First Night every year, at least for a couple of hours. So every year, I go to their website to see what's new...
(I don't remember seeing the blog in previous years, but the website has undergone a complete update. It's much nicer than what I remember and much better organized. My only complaint is that you have to use Back from the blog to return to the main site. And be sure to click First Night 2009 in the upper left to get to this year's information.)
And if you're going to First Night, let me know! Maybe we can meet up somewhere :-)
I've seen questions popping up in various places about Twitter. What is it? What's it good for? Why use it? So my first thought was to write a blog post about it.
And then all sorts of other folks got the same idea ;-) So I'm going to give you an introduction and then a bunch of links for other articles that provide more information.
Twitter is considered a "micro-blogging" service because of the size of the posts, commonly called "tweets": 140 characters. (If you type more than that, anyone who gets your tweets will receive multiples.) Why 140? Because SMS (or text) messages max out at 160, and those remaining 20 characters are used for things like the sender's name and timestamp.
If you look at the Twitter site, you'll see that it wants you to announce what you're doing. But as many people have stated, it's more than that. People tweet what they're doing, where they're going, who they're going with. They reply to other tweets (but publicly, which means that everyone can follow the conversation). Some folks use it for business...for example, I've set up a broadcast Twitter account for @helpstuff where I tweet things that are happening in the online Help world. Some folks combine business and personal. Some folks only use it for personal information.
But why use it at all? To me, it's a way to see what's going on in my friends' lives and to meet new people. More importantly, it's a way to find out what's going on in areas I might not normally investigate or that I'm curious about.
When I think of Twitter, I picture me at a large conference exhibition hall. All around me are numerous conversations...some personal, some professional, some a combination. Some folks are sharing information they learned from someone else. Some people I know, some I don't, and some are friends of friends. But unlike an expo where I might be hesitant to walk up and listen (or even jump) into a conversation, that's just what I do with Twitter.
For an extroverted introvert, this is the best of all worlds :-)
Once you set up your (free) account, you start following people. I follow what might be considered an eclectic group: friends, other Help authoring/online doc consultants, consultants in other fields, and people I probably would never meet or talk to otherwise. And as you follow people, they start following you. You can jump into the middle of conversations or start one.
How much you tweet and what you tweet about is up to you. Who you follow is up to you. How much you read is up to you. So Twitter doesn't have to take over your life...it enhances it based on the content you're interested in.
What if you want to eavesdrop on conversations but not take part? You don't have to join Twitter...just go to the individual pages of people you're interested in and read their tweets. (For example, my pages are at http://www.twitter.com/CharJTF and http://www.twitter.com/helpstuff.) At the bottom of the page is an RSS link that you can use if you prefer to see what's going on that way. If I've replied to someone, you'll see @name and it will be linked. Click the link to then read that person's tweets.
Or instead of reading individual pages, you can aggregate content with FriendFeed. (My personal feed is at http://friendfeed.com/charjtf and I have an aggregated feed at http://friendfeed.com/charjtf/friends.) So you could set up your own FriendFeed that pulls the information you want to keep up with.
If you do get a Twitter account, most people install some kind of application that grabs your tweets. I use TweetDeck, which is an AIR application that lets me group tweets...for example, I have columns for All Tweets, Friends, Replies, and Direct Messages. I can also create custom searches...for example, I have a custom search set up that lets me know if anyone has tweeted about helpstuff or hat-matrix.
Now for some links:
- Guy Kawasaki's Alltop Twitter News
- Wishful Thinking's 6 Reasons Why I Was Wrong About Twitter
- 20 Signs You Twitter Too Much (from Guy Kawasaki) (and no, I do NOT exhibit all of these signs. Really.)
- TwitterLocal (find folks located near a specific ZIP code who tweet)
- Keep Everyone Informed with Twitter (article I wrote for STC News & Notes). There are more links at the end of the article. (I especially liked Zappos' Tony Hseih's Quick Start Guide and Common Craft's video on using Twitter.)
So whether you tweet or not, now you know what all the fuss is about :-) See you in the Twitterverse!
Thoughts and more from helpstuff.com...
|<< <||> >>|