Twitter! Huh! What is it good for?

Absolutely nothing.

I’m on Twitter.  Why?

Because I bought the hype.  

With most other parts of the internet, mainstream media found out about them way after the fact. All their articles were so embarassingly late, it made them look old-economy.  But they weren’t going to make the same mistake twice.  Oh no.  So Twitter got thrashed.

You couldn’t open the New York Times website, The Age, or the Gideon’s bible without some amazing story of how Twitter was the first with the latest news re: Obama, a new cafe opening in Carlton, or the transsubstantiation of water to wine.  

To the point where there are no more twitter stories left: they’ve actually run the well dry.

I read these articles. I was eager. It was free. Twitter was pitched as the new facebook.  I liked the old facebook.  Why wouldn’t I like the new one?

But after a 3-or 4-month dalliance with Twitter, I can confirm that it sucks.  

I could give you lots of theories why.  Noone is on it; it does what facebook does (but without photos); etc.  But the simple version is this: I never read anything interesting when I open Twitter.  

I even followed some cool people for a while.  MC Hammer.  Stephen Fry.  Al Gore.  Architecture in Helsinki.  Yawns all round.  I don’t blame Hammer/Fry/Gore/Helsinki.  I blame the medium. It’s Boring McBoringson.  

If I was friends with Hammer on fb, I’m sure he’d rock my world with his esoteric personality quiz-taking, and clever tagging of inanimate objects as friends.

So, unless Twitter changes its ways, I’m going to leave it permanently. I give it 30 more days, and then it gets the chop!

Some of you who know me personally may remember my evangelistic fervour for Twitter when I first joined. You may recall a verbal picture I painted of a future where the world was united in Twitter membership. You may mock. (You will anyway, but I choose to give permission.)

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Thomas the Think Engine is the blog of a trained economist. It comes to you from Melbourne Australia.

5 thoughts on “Twitter! Huh! What is it good for?”

  1. breathe deep, embrace and accept. Its here to stay you just need to know more people that are on it to make sense. The more you put in, the more you get out of it. Think of it like a girlfriend or a puppy. If you dont pay attention to the puppy it shits on the floor everywhere. Pay attention and it will end up shitting where you want it to – that is Twitter, shit, delivered where you want it – preferably on your iPhone


  2. I like the puppy analogy.

    Facebook just seems like a cuter puppy. Twitter is at risk of being put in a sack with a brick, and dropped off a bridge.


  3. I don’t like the puppy analogy.
    ‘If you don’t pay attention to the puppy it shits on the floor everywhere’ – Well then you pay lots of attention!
    You’ve got to discipline the puppy to make it better – MAKE TWITTER BETTER and we’ll pay attention to it.


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