Sunday, November 02, 2008

Why Twittering Will Never Replace Blogging

Had an interesting discussion with @Joey96 at the Outlaw Cigar's monthly event this weekend.

Joey96's position was that Twitter, which limits your submissions to just 140 characters was more in keeping with how people consume information today. People aren't looking for a treatise or an essay...they want sound bites. They want bullet points. They want summaries.

I don't necessarily disagree. I think it's a bit sad that people's attention spans are becoming so small that it requires an electron microscope to measure them. But I don't have a leg to stand on.

The attention span of humans has been in steady decline for tens of thousands of years. Think of the attention span required to build and share useful tools when you have no language and the most advanced technology you have is banging two rocks together.

One could view the evolutionary pressure of twittering as a technological form of natural selection serving to winnow bloggers with a predisposition to excessive verbosity from the online gene pool.

I know of at least one blogger who has embraced this new form of expression and does it better than anyone I know.

He can tell a complete story in just 140 characters. It's like a form of haiku. Which is awesome.

But it's different than a blog post.

A blog post is a painting,

a tweet is a photograph.

A blog post is a novel, a tweet is the movie version.

Bucketing both of them in "Social Networking Media" is painting with a pretty broad brush.

I would say that twitter falls into the blurred boundary between self publishing and instant messaging.

They are different media.

In a blog post, I have the luxury of including poached graphics and hyper-links to source material.

A 140 character text post to someones cell phone doesn't allow for that sort of information dissemination.


May said...

I don't understand why ppl think twittering will replace blogging. They're completely different modes of expression. Twitter is no threat to me.

Anonymous said...

I agree completely esp with your assessment of one of my favorite twitterers (or tweets or whatever the hell you call it) Ive explained twitter to people as an outlet for my mental tourette's. But I would hate it if you or he or any of my twitter friends stopped blogging.

Stinkbait Boucher said...

Twitter is my notebook. I just use it to store nonsense and wise-ass remarks that I'll use in my blogs once I finally land and get back in to the business.

So I agree - except with your comment about the one guy on Twitter. I just don't get him. He seems so angry.

Happy In Bag said...

Boring! Quit wasting my time with all your words and ideas and abstract concepts.