I’m not a big fan of Twitter. There is too much pressure to post interesting, quote-worthy zingers that someone will not only like, but re-tweet. It’s not enough to be famous and post about what you ate for dinner. If you have a million followers, your tweets better be entertaining, have insight and be share-worthy to the highest degree. It seems almost impossible for the average person, then, to be able to keep up with those standards. Which is probably why many of us are “followers” and “re-tweeters” more than actual “tweeters”.
In cases like the Boston bombings, Twitter played a MAJOR part in getting information out to the public, and also allowing friends and family to know that a loved one was okay. This type of usage is paramount. Amazing that we can learn about a world event in seconds, right from the source, and pass it on to others. This aspect of Twitter is incredible.
But more and more, we are seeing and even encouraged to Tweet during live events. From an entertainment standpoint, tweeting during the finale of American Idol about your thoughts on each performer probably isn’t such a big deal. I find it appalling, however, that at a recent White House Correspondents’ Dinner, people were tweeting witty remarks during the event. There was even an article from Time Magazine posted the following day with the Best Tweets from the White House Correspondents’ Dinner.
All right, I understand the irony here….that I’m complaining about communication during a correspondents’ event, but this is just the latest example. Why are so many people attending events that should mean something to them, and texting on their phones? Can’t they put their phones away for a couple of hours to actually BE in the moment? Are these events so unimportant to them that they sit there composing the best one-liners they can think of, all the while ignoring what is happening right in front of them? If that’s the case, they’re the wrong people to be involved.
We are becoming too disconnected in our lives. We sit at our computers, with our phones in hand, texting, emailing, checking Facebook status, surfing……and we’re completely ignoring our actual flesh-and-blood lives. Will this stop? I doubt it. I’m sure it’s only going to get worse as social media becomes less about being social and more about media. Maybe people should be posting more thoughts about this on Twitter, to reach the people that really need it.
Do you tweet during important events in your life?