Twitter De Twitter Dum

Web Host Industry Review offers a concise look at some possible uses for Twitter, a Web 2.0 darling du jour.

You can use Twitter as a shorthand newsletter. The example that LifeHacker gave was a video store, whose employees can post new movies now available for rental, holiday business hours, limited-time sales promo, etc. Likewise, web hosting providers can keep customers posted on network status (“some DC2 circuits scheduled for maintenance @ 2-3am”) or announce new products (“this just in: quad core servers for $199!”).

Technorati, CNN, BBC Video and Google News all have Twitter channels, so clearly business is finding the service useful.
Meg Pickard takes a look at how individuals use Twitter.
She says, “different people use it in very different ways.”
Her Twittering classes are:

  • The Briefers, who provide only bulletins relating to current location or status. Example: Waiting for the bus. Cold.
  • The Detailers, who use Twitter to give an insight into what they’re thinking, eating, listening to, looking forward to, planning, and so on. Example: Wondering what to have for tea tonight. Pasta, maybe.
  • The Kitchen Sinkers, who use Twitter as a new form of blogging, recording thoughts and links and opinions and ideas, addressed to no-one in particular. Example: Traffic lights broken at the corner of high street. Phoned work and told them I’ll be late. That’s the fourth time this week. Sigh.
  • The Pongers, who respond publically to other users whose updates they are receiving via Twitter (so called because they return each IM ping with a pong). Example: @Jim: Hahaha! Yes!

According to Twitter, the service was born as an interesting side project within the offices of Odeo in March of 2006. There’s more on the firm’s blog.
[UPDATE: Book Two is using Twitter to republish James Joyce’s Ulysses, line by line.]



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.