Tag Archives: Twitter

Which technology would you like to disappear?

2484112082_cf4b78d9abThere’s both good and bad news in the realm of communications.

This week, voice mail came in for castigation from Slate’s Farhad Manjoo. Everyone should enjoy this one. He succinctly summarized voice mail’s every shortcoming and held out hope for a better, saner world —

“If the voice-mail leavers in your life are anything like those in mine, there’s often no great reward for getting through your messages, either. ‘Guess you’re not there. Call me back.’ That message might have made sense in the days of home answering machines, when the main function of voice mail was to let someone know who you were and that you’d called—both things our phones now tell automatically. On the rare chance that you do get an important voice mail, your first move is to transfer the information to some more permanent medium—say, ink and paper. Unlike just about every other mode of electronic communication today, after all, voice mail can’t be searched.”

Voice mail may get no mourners, but people are crowding around the issue of ailing newspapers like the guys who always gathered around the film projector trying to get the movie to work.

Howard Kurtz at the Washington Post weighs in, arguing that newspapers have been killing themselves and, like a stricken patient ordering that he be bled, are intensifying the hemorrhaging by firing more  journalists.

“The missed opportunities were endless. For the first time in half a century, newspapers could compete against television with real-time reporting, but didn’t. The Globe’s previous owners turned down a 1995 offer from the founder of Monster.com to put Globe classifieds online, before his site became a smash hit. Why did no establishment media company create a Craigslist, a Huffington Post, a Google News, a Twitter, or other sites that have altered the boundaries of news and information?”

Finally, Doonesbury gives us some Tweet with meat in today’s “Tweets of Roland Hedley,” which I read in my Washington Post. This is the content against which all Twitterers should be judged:

“Woke up in strange apartment, so running late. Thank God for iPhone GPS.”

“Bumped into an old stalker of mine at Borders…”

Follow him.

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Just tried the new Colgate Wisp. Anyone want a kiss?

colgate_wisp

Is Twitter on the way out? I’m asking because I’m still on the fence about it (see my thoughts about cell phones) and this post quoted another post that raised the question.

” ‘Early adopters like a product as long as they are the early adopters for it. Once it reaches that majority status, early adopters start looking for something else to adopt . . . early.’  This is an interesting thought. Is Twitter getting too big? Is it starting to grow too much?” one or both of them wrote.

There’s so much pro and con about Twitter out there. Like here and here. Here. Here. Even here. Here’s a video called “Real Life Twitter.” And here’s a post that argues Twitter has jumped the shark. (And let me point out that the phrase “jumped the shark” itself jumped the shark long before Twitter was invented.)

The people who seem to be abandoning Twitter are the so-called early adopters. They’re the folks who, when you find out about the party and show up early, are there and already sloshed.

Early adopters are the people who dropped their gas lighting service and wired their house for electricity before anyone else. They’re the ones who decided they didn’t have to walk to the next farm to borrow an egg because they could buy a car and get there faster. And after being the first on the street with a telephone, decided there would be some worth in not depending on people calling back, and bought an answering machine so they’d never miss a call.

You see what I’m getting at? There’s still no reason they installed 8-Track players in their cars.

But the deeper questions are: how do you early adopter types see what I don’t see, and what are you seeing right now?

Cindi suggested time travel might be next, but she was joshing. I suppose. I’m curious, what’s the next big thing? What are you the first person doing? What gets you “early adopter” written all over your face?

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