The Twitter aha moment and beyond

I've really gotten into Twitter of late, and noticed something of a maturing process in my expectations and usage of the service. I'm generally not a social network joiner by nature and temperament - though I am a professional web developer, and contribute some to open source projects - so perhaps this list may play differently for the more socially-driven individual. I think, however, there is some value in recording the incipient stages of this Twitterer's growth curve.

The stages:

  1. This is silly and irrelevant. I don't understand the appeal.
  2. Aha!* It's about [social networking | small observations | asynchronous dialog | micro-blogging | announcements | letting your network be your filter | any combination of these].
  3. Twitter let's me talk with my friends, make new ones, find out what important people are thinking.
  4. Erk, I have clients/co-workers following me. Better speak as if I'm in polite company.
  5. It's okay to micro-blog some details of life, but maybe everyone doesn't need to know what I had for lunch. Perhaps if I share where I'm having lunch I could meet up with others.
  6. I'm in the public square. Let's use this to do something good.
  7. There's too many people for me to follow every post. I'll just follow a few, read all @replies and see what's going on in the main feed now and again.

* My aha moment was at Drupalcon Boston 2008, I'd followed the Drupalcon Twitter account and received schedule updates, and after-hours meetup info on my cell phone. That came in handy as there were last minute adjustments when speakers came down sick, etc.


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