The vandals took the handle

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Twitter offers a view into Internet without traditional websites

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As public interest in Twitter literally exploded in recent weeks, a friend suggested that the booming micro-blogger was really no more than an RSS feed.

The answer is “Yes” ……… and “No”.

Certainly, Twitter can be used like an RSS feed. You only need to nominate a subject and wait for information to arrive – just like Google Reader. Then, you can join the conversation when and if you wish.  This is a ‘social networking’ use of Twitter, similar to the chatty aspects of Facebook or LinkedIn

However, that misses the bigger picture with Twitter. Sure, it can be used to chat; join groups; find old friends and discuss work opportunities etc. And, it can be done from your mobile phone, at any place and any time.

However, Twitter is a far more powerful communication tool, because it is also a news source and search facility; a potent vehicle for delivering emergency and service information; a 24-hour link with the media;  a streamlined internal communication system; and a promotional and brand-building utility (as imaginatives businesses, PR firms, politicians and government organisations are rapidly realising)

Twitter’s broad range of uses and mobile delivery are exactly the reasons why this type of technology is at the forefront of a dramatic change in how people use the Internet and possibly the demise of traditional websites.

In the UK this week came the revelation that the government plans to teach young children about Twitter and new media in general.

Mike Butcher, editor of the new media blog, Tech Crunch Europe, put it neatly recently when he said that a world in which many more people are tweeting, and those tweets are fully searchable, would potentially allow a real-time search facility of “the consciousness of the planet”.

Anyone thinking of building or revamping their web presence, would do well to take note.

Ian

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Written by ianandsue

March 29, 2009 at 2:16 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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