Image via CrunchBase
After 7 days, 55 followers, following 120 people, 50 updates and more time than I will ever admit to, I just could not take it any longer, so I deleted my account. Twitter.com/HPY is no more.
Last week Twitter dominated my life. If I wasn’t checking Lance Armstrong’s latest musings from the tour down under (twitter.com/lancearmstrong), or stalking Dragons (which turned out to be fake), I would be constantly interrupting my thought process by checking out the latest conversation being held by some people I am vaguely connected to.
I started the week using www.twitter.com, by Wednesday I had downloaded Power Twitter, a firefox plugin, by Friday I had downloaded Tweetdeck, allowing me to have 3 columns of different groups of mindless consciousness streaming down my page, with a desk top reminder flashing at me just in case I missed a tweet.
Finally the weekend arrived. Respite from this constant pull was in sight. But no. I still had a nagging desire to just have a quick peep to see what was going on. We had some friends over for dinner. Once they had headed home my wife and I stayed up chatting. I confessed about my new relationship with 120 people that I hardly new. I showed her what I had been up to. Relief. Sharing was half the battle. She laughed. “It’s pathetic, what are all these people doing?”. I showed her more, we laughed together this time. I suddenly had an urge to delete my account. The wine definitely helped. Options, Set up, Account, DELETE. Phew. A wave of relief swept over me.
Reading this you may be thinking that the problem here is not Twitter, it is how I was using it. I can not deny that my character is particularly susceptible to be overrun by something like Twitter, but, I could not help but notice that I was not the only one that Twitter had got a grip on. That is why it works so well - it sucks people in, as they feel the need to be part of the constant stream of conversation.
So, did I learn much during my week on Twitter? Did I influence anyone? I don’t think I learnt anything that I would not have picked up elsewhere. I read some blog posts an hour or two before I would have picked them up. However, a few people did read this blog that otherwise would not have done. That is why I signed up - we are launching soon, and we are starting to get our communicating channels in place.
We will use Twitter, but when we do we will need some firm objectives and someone who can handle being plugged in to 100s of people without getting sucked in.