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Friday, 23 March 2012

Fed up with Twitter of other social network? Try a stream switch

Twitter, it can get dull. Same old people, same old issues. Yes, I'm sure many think that about me too.

But this isn't a post about getting back at the dullards, in fact it's the opposite.  You shouldn't be questioning why people post what they do - you should be questioning why you're bothering to listen.

It's a reminder that on Twitter and other social networks, audience is a privilege, not a right.

There's some weird psychology at play. Gaming the numbers, Peerindex, Klout score, follower count etc.

You don't want to unfollow for risk of offending. Or because you know they'll unfollow and kill your ambitions to reach X-thousand followers.

So you'd seriously put up with the shit just to look more popular? Or, as I'm hearing more and more, ditch using the network entirely because its lost its zing!

I'm evangelical about the way information seeps through the social web and personal publishing. It's radically different to anything we've seen before - it's symmetrical; a 2-way process. And it's massively distributed - control of the "channels" is in the hands of the many, not the few.

In some respects it restores the way we communicate to before the advent of affordable mass printing.  We had to rely on word-of-mouth, 1-to-1 or 1-to-few communications.  Word came down from the emperor to the senate, and from senators to their civic leaders, and from these leaders out to the villages.

And word went back. Not only that, but civic leaders addressing congregations got to immediately judge the mood of their people.

Since the Gutenberg press and up until the web hit mainstream, all developments in broadcasting have been one-to-many. Plus there was a massive asymmetry in feedback.  Upset about a TV programme - you had to write to the broadcaster.

So the likes of Twitter are both inherently democratic and put you the "listener" in control, with an almost infinite choice of what to listen to.

Twitter especially offers options for those stuck with too much baggage on their stream. Start afresh. Leave your old account active but create a new one. Search for discussions which interest you and start following.

So you're parking an account with a healthy following for one with zero. The humiliation! Just get over the stats game and make a stream of conversations you find interesting.

Alternatively, bite the bullet and ditch the baggage. Make a fresh omelette!


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