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Andy Leonard

Andy Leonard is an author and engineer who enjoys building and automating data integration solutions. Andy is co-host of the Data Driven podcast. Andy is no longer updating this blog. His current blog is

My Thoughts On Twitter

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Published Friday, May 14, 2010 8:00 AM by andyleonard

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Michael J Swart said:

I would have written that twitter isn't *just* micro-blogging and that Twitter isn't just slow IM. Because it can be those things if that's how one uses it.

You're absolutely right that it's a new medium. Twitter isn't just a communication tool for ______. Twitter is a communication tool. And like you said, people are finding many ways to fill in the blank.

I thought that a large part of this article could have been written 100 years ago, after replacing "Twitter" with "Telephone Lines".

(I do realize that this comment is at odds with the idea that the <a href="">Medium is the Message</a>)

May 14, 2010 8:54 AM

alen said:

when i was in the Army in the 1990's we had a process that if you wanted to complain you had to follow the chain of command. even though all commanders had an open door policy, you were expected to first take it up the chain first.

the military had email for a long time, but then came hotmail. you could go to the library and send an email to your chain of command anonymously. after a year or two, they made up a name for this. flattening the chain of command or something like that. a private could complain to a colonel without going through the chain.

Twitter is on a larger scale. in the old days you had to read a magazine to read up on your favorite musician or actor or actress. now you can follow them on twitter and ask them stuff directly. Same with questions on SQL or anything else. you don't need a big media company to get information when you can go straight to the source

May 14, 2010 9:25 AM

Chris Randall said:

I agree with Michael in saying Twitter isn't *just* microblogging - microblogging was in fact Twitter's initial announced purpose. That some people use it for other purposes doesn't remove that usage.

I've been around long enough to have seen and used everything from "talk" between old IBM VM systems, IRC, chat rooms and IM and now Twitter, and other than APIs, I'm not seeing anything in Twitter that hasn't been done before. It's just easier to get at by the masses. it's not anything completely new. Then again, is anything? :)

For a fun read, check out "The Victorian Internet", a book about the changes to communication brought about by the adoption of the telegraph:

May 14, 2010 11:04 AM

Steve Jones said:

I have come to see Twitter as this Graffiti wall in a long hallway where people wander through during the day. Some are there a long time, some a few minutes, and what you wrote can get overwritten quickly, but not necessarily so.

May 14, 2010 11:53 AM

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