Meanwhile, underneath the prevalence of the public apology is a great public wrong. And so we, the public, we want someone to do something. We want the offending column fixed, the black woman comedian hired, the bill to pass, banks to lend safely, clean drinking water, health care, a job, even just a book recommendation we can count on. We want action on whatever it is, and we go to Twitter for it, feed fatigue and all, because there, unlike just about everywhere else, we still get what we’re after. Twitter, for all the ridiculousness there, is one of the few places where there’s accountability at all for any of this. While it may feel dangerous that no one is above being taken down by Twitter, it also means that in its way, it is the one truly democratic institution left. It may be terrifying that it is the one place you have to be more careful than most, but that is also why, for now, it still matters.

I Did Not Sign On For the #Outrage | Alexander Chee | Dame Magazine

I really recommend clicking through and reading in its entirety. It’s a great counteranalysis to all the “Twitter wars” nonsense.

The reaction on Twitter to major political events and policy decisions often differs a great deal from public opinion as measured by surveys. This is the conclusion of a year-long Pew Research Center study that compared the results of national polls to the tone of tweets in response to eight major news events, including the outcome of the presidential election, the first presidential debate and major speeches by Barack Obama.

Twitter Reaction to Events Often at Odds with Overall Public Opinion | Pew Research Center

Also, from the report released today: “At times the Twitter conversation is more liberal than survey responses, while at other times it is more conservative. Often it is the overall negativity that stands out.”

So, Twitter’s collective consciousness is neither liberal nor conservative… just angry?

Hilarious. You can buy fake twitter followers but the “supplier” outs you as proof of the quality of their service.
I came across an article in the New York Times (it’s a few months old but I was checking some social media tactics in politics and this was one of the top search results). The article explains how celebrities and politicians buy Twitter followers and contained a link to one such “service provider”. The capture above is part of this person’s pitch, where they brag about the quality of their service… outing their customers. I suppose that probably defeats the purpose of the “investment”?

Hilarious. You can buy fake twitter followers but the “supplier” outs you as proof of the quality of their service.

I came across an article in the New York Times (it’s a few months old but I was checking some social media tactics in politics and this was one of the top search results). The article explains how celebrities and politicians buy Twitter followers and contained a link to one such “service provider”. The capture above is part of this person’s pitch, where they brag about the quality of their service… outing their customers. I suppose that probably defeats the purpose of the “investment”?

Sometimes I just look at my children and think about the time when they had my vagina round their neck.

Sweden Twitter Experiment Goes Painfully Awry

The Swedish government has been handing over the @sweden Twitter account to a different citizen each week, and this week’s owner is steering the car right off a social media cliff.

The quote above is part of a long string of racist, homophobic and just plain bizarre tweets from the “Swedish citizen” handling the account this week. Eh, eventually it had to happen, for seven months they had nothing but nice and amiable users tweeting from the account. And now they have this.

Twitter has made stalking easier

The latest re-design of Twitter is truly cringe inducing. They have added a new tab called “Activity”. In this tab you can now keep track of every Twitter move of those you follow. Has your stalking target friend followed someone new today? Are they having conversations you could only previously see through several clicks and purposeful search? Have they shared a photo with another user that wasn’t you? Now it’s all neatly packaged in a single place! No longer do you need to click several times and manually check the people they follow, Twitter has facilitated this process for you. Which you know, bah. At least make stalkers work for the information. I am almost certain many used to get discouraged simply because it took time and some effort to find all of this out. 

Every day I am more and more convinced that politicians should limit their use of Twitter to disseminate links to their blog posts or for birthday announcements. I mean, I personally know some high profile Dutch politicians. In person, these people are sensible, smart, their ideas are not based on rigid dogmas, etc. Now, when I see some of their Twitter feeds (which I know for a fact are not in the hands of aides or assistants), I shake my head in disbelief quite often. I suppose the problem is partly rooted in Twitter’s character limitation (really, how much depth and nuance can you offer in 140 characters?). To make matters worse, generally speaking, these tweets are typed from mobile phones, with small screens and annoying little keys, while the person doing the typing is also paying attention to other stuff. The result is a series of ridiculously shallow and inane interactions that make the politician look terrible. Their ideas have no subtlety, no depth, no room for analysis. They end up coming across as black vs. white/ good vs. evil thinkers, which you know, is the best way to alienate a good chunk of your follow base. Also, the immediacy of their responses make it so that they won’t even take the time to weight their replies or their words. First thing that comes to mind! Off it goes to the world!

And then are we surprised people all over Europe are staging protests because they feel democracy has failed them? Not that Twitter is to blame for that sentiment, but it surely looks like a good sample of a wider problem.

image em-dash replied to your post: It’s Friday and my Twitter patience is running out

Are you talking about paper.li? It’s not so much a compilation of links they put together as it is an automated process that culls links from the people they follow. I know cause I use it sometimes to organize the top stories from my own feed.

Something similar yes (which I also use). But it’s the name they gave to it that simultaneously cracked me up and horrified me. Really, they couldn’t find something that would be charity appropriate without making it sound like a bad Benny Hill joke?

It’s Friday and my Twitter patience is running out

I think I figured out why I do not really like Twitter (I don’t hate it, but I am certainly not very fond of it). It’s because it’s like a snapshot of human sense of entitlement. And when I say “human”, I mean, middle class (and above) because obviously, that’s the most abundant demographics on Twitter.

I mean, I just saw that a charity that follows me posted one of those automatically generated messages, which links to a compilation of links they put together. The title for this compilation? The Hydrocephalus Daily. I get it that they are devoted to charity and awareness but it sounds so shallow. So out of place. So trivializing.

And this was followed by a Tweet from another person, a devoted Christian (don’t ask me where I collect these followers, they find me, not the other way around), who was waxing lyrical because the taxi driver he just met in Nepal (where, needless to say, he is doing missionary work) congratulated him for being Christian and he, of course, had to praise the Lord for it. I doubt the taxi driver gave two fucks, he was probably just being polite. But missionary dude now believes this is some sort of sign.

And I read that scrolling through my timeline and think “Why? Why? Is this a snapshot of the peak of human intellect? The Hydrocephalus Daily (last week it was Brain Injury Daily)? A pasty white guy praising Jesus while trekking the heights of Nepal?”.

If anyone has any doubts about the source of my mild misanthropy, I’ll be happy to share the links of some of my Twitter followers*.

(Yes, I know I should unfollow these people, but the thought of being unnecessarily rude to people who are not doing anything specifically wrong just makes me anxious).

Meet Kurt Schlichter, self described conservative (ex)comedianWith a follow base of 4000+ people, Mr. Kurt Schlichter shares the pearls of his infinite wisdom on a regular basis. A few more gems:I am a Conservative: I would end subsidized school lunches. Let mom & dad go without if they won’t feed their kids.I am a Conservative: Too few people are hungry & homeless. More deadbeats should be both.I am a Conservative: Can’t feed your family? Maybe you ought to stop breeding. Just a thought.Perhaps someone should tell him that there is now scientific evidence that people like him die younger?

Meet Kurt Schlichter, self described conservative (ex)comedian

With a follow base of 4000+ people, Mr. Kurt Schlichter shares the pearls of his infinite wisdom on a regular basis. A few more gems:

I am a Conservative: I would end subsidized school lunches. Let mom & dad go without if they won’t feed their kids.

I am a Conservative: Too few people are hungry & homeless. More deadbeats should be both.

I am a Conservative: Can’t feed your family? Maybe you ought to stop breeding. Just a thought.

Perhaps someone should tell him that there is now scientific evidence that people like him die younger?

via Cartastrophe, No Swearing in Utah. A US map of Twitter swearing habits.
Unfortunately dark color choice, by the way, but neat idea. From the downloadable PDF at the link:

Based upon an interpolated surface generated from approximately 1.5 million geocoded public posts on Twitter between March 9th and April 12th, 2010. These data represent only a sample of all posts made during that period. Isolines are based upon the average number of profanities found in the 500 nearest data points, in order to compensate for low population areas.

via Cartastrophe, No Swearing in Utah. A US map of Twitter swearing habits.

Unfortunately dark color choice, by the way, but neat idea. From the downloadable PDF at the link:

Based upon an interpolated surface generated from approximately 1.5 million geocoded public posts on Twitter between March 9th and April 12th, 2010. These data represent only a sample of all posts made during that period. Isolines are based upon the average number of profanities found in the 500 nearest data points, in order to compensate for low population areas.