political walk of shame (noun): that thing you do while picking up signs the first Saturday morning after losing an election 😳 pic.twitter.com/yaxd0O01LW
— Michael Weaver (@MichaelWeaverSC) March 3, 2018
I’m doing some spring cleaning on my Twitter account.
Actually, it has nothing to do with spring. It’s just that the number of feeds I was following got up to 600, and I have a rule that I keep the number under that. (It’s hard to explain, but I find that’s a good number for me — I follow everybody I want to and keep my own feed from being cluttered with lazy or defunct feeds.)
One of the first things I do when culling is look for people I had decided to follow temporarily — such as the folks who ran for Rick Quinn’s House District 69 seat in the recent special primary. Candidates are active while they’re running, then often let their feeds lie fallow once they’re done, and I no longer have a reason to follow them.
But as I got ready to delete attorney Michael Weaver, I noticed the couple of Tweets he posted after failing to get into the runoff. I thought he took a classy approach to failure, and I liked that he didn’t take himself too seriously.
It’s not that he’s knee-slapping funny. I just like his, “Well, I tried, but life goes on” tone.
I might just keep following him for awhile longer…
Election results are in and I am out. So I think that means we’ll be holding hands on our next date instead of waiving them! https://t.co/523CxKiMMd
— Michael Weaver (@MichaelWeaverSC) February 28, 2018
How long does your phone battery last following 600 people on Twitter? Your phone must constantly buzz or ding. I must be anti-social, I”m not on Twitter or Facebook… I don’t need to know what people are doing every minute of their life nor do they need to know what I’m doing. If I need to know I’ll ask, or if they need to know I’ll contact them. It’s becoming more and more clear how smart phones are affecting us in negative ways.
Did you see the NBC Nightly News segment last night that kids today have an average attention span of 7 seconds? Goldfish have an attention span of 8 seconds.
Today on the Today Show they showed brain scans of people texting and did experiments of people texting and walking… hundreds of people die every year trying to do both.
There are a lot of people — a dwindling number, but still a lot — who say things like this:
Folks who say that don’t get what social media is about, at least for people like me.
Yeah, I realize there are some folks who tweet about where they are and what they’re eating, etc. Those are people for whom it’s all about the social… they want to share everything with their friends.
For me, it’s about news and commentary. I’m following news sources and newsmakers, and if you have a wide range of interests, that’s going to get you to several hundred feeds right away. Partly because I not only follow newspapers and magazines and other institutional sources, but a lot of the journalists who work for them, individually. With journalists who know what they’re doing on Twitter, this can give you insight in what’s happening at a breaking news event as it’s happening, beyond what gets into the eventual story.
The same goes with commentary — many, many sources. Lastly, there are a few feeds I follow just because I find them entertaining — but there aren’t many of those.
None of these run to the “I’m at Starbucks getting a Venti latte” sort of Tweet, which is what you think it’s about.
Back before the web and social media, I was better and more immediately informed than most people because I had not only local news but AP, the L.A. Times, the Washington Post, the New York Times and other services streaming through my computer — or back in mainframe days, my terminal — all day. Regular readers only ever saw a fraction of that stuff.
Now, everybody can have a thousand times that amount of info streaming through their phones or tablets or computers all day. If they choose to, and if they choose well. One of the reasons we’re at a terrible moment in this country is too many people choose poorly, going for sources that play to their prejudices rather than getting a broad look at the world and what’s really happening in it.
If you choose well and embrace the technology, you can still be what I was so effortlessly back in the pre-web days — considerably better informed than average.
It all depends on how you take advantage of the opportunities before you…
So… how many messages do you get per hour while following 600 people? Can you keep up with everything and still do your job? How many hours per day do you spend staring at your phone… as many as the average high school girl?
“So… how many messages do you get per hour while following 600 people?”
None. Just as I don’t get notifications when I get email. That would be a huge waste of time.
It’s there when I decide to look at it.
Lately, Twitter’s been doing a Facebook — looking at people I regularly interact with or reTweet, and putting their tweets on top whenever I go to look. Consequently, there’s always something at the top from Bryan Caskey, or Joel Sartore, or the Pope.
That’s nice in a way, but in another way I don’t approve. I’d rather it be strictly whatever has come in most recently at the top. Old School…
“Consequently, there’s always something at the top from Bryan Caskey, or Joel Sartore, or the Pope.”
Not bad company, if I do say so myself. 🙂
Top billing, too.
Top of the world, Ma! Top of the world!
You’ve earned it…
So to answer my question, is your phone constantly buzzing and vibrating and how do you keep up with the dozens or hundreds of tweets per day?
How many are repeats of the same information… for example, the Stormy Daniels 60 minutes interview?
I’ve already answered that…
Think of it as a river of information, and you live right on the river. I don’t have to look at the river, but it’s there if I want to look at it, or if I want to dip a bucket in and get some water, at any time….
Isn’t that like reading a book by opening it up in the middle and reading any random page and then putting it back down until the next time you need to read it? How much information can you get by jumping into the middle of a conversation?
No, it isn’t.
Basically, the latest stuff is there right on top. So if you want to know the latest news, it’s right there any time.
And if you missed the moment when the thing happened, if it’s important people will still be tweeting reactions to it, or reactions to reactions. So you’re just a click or two from finding out what that development was.
So you can check it any time you want and still get the main news of the day in a matter of seconds.
It’s hard to imagine a better, easier way to stay on top of news, at your own convenience.
Of course, it’s probably a little easier for me, because I know how news breaks and how conversations about it flow, because I’ve been deeply immersed in such things my whole adult life. I don’t get bogged down in trivia; I recognize real news when I see it. For other people that might not be second-nature.
And that could be one reason why Twitter is the favorite social medium of journalists (and of people who are professionally involved in politics), while most other people prefer something like Facebook.
Twitter is the same as the news flow I’m accustomed to, only the flow of information is exponentially greater….
I follow 10 people , mainly national beat writers, and block anyone that follows me. Keeps it simple.