Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Lurking on Twitter

Recently I have been reflecting on the role Twitter plays in my life. Over the last week, some of the local female tweeters I follow left because they felt unsafe. Then there was this tweet from @whatedsaid about tweets that don't add value. Most of it sounded like my own "contribution" to Twitter. Stephanie posted a follow up blog post on tweets that add value. That didn't sound much like me either. So given that I am not exactly setting the Twittersphere alight with my wit and wisdom and it is a medium that has its risks, why do I still use it?

For me, Twitter is all about information. When I joined Twitter in 2008, I was a stay at home, digi-scrapbooking mum looking to improve my photography so I mainly followed photographers, scrapbookers, photoshop experts and a few other random people that I found interesting. When I did my teacher training I started following people involved in education. It has pretty much continued from there. I like following a variety of people. It helps widen my perspective and gives me access to voices I don't hear on the usual channels. I suppose I tend to treat Twitter more like radio than a conversation, so I don't get wound up about who actually follows (or doesn't follow) me.

Twitter has also opened me up to opportunities that I would not have had otherwise. The #edchatnz conference was one. Getting involved with the #twitteraunties is another. Both are the result of people with a purpose leveraging the power of social media to make the world a better place and are a reminder that Twitter is not all nastiness and trolling. That is the side of Twitter that I like and that is what keeps me tweeting (even if they are only cat pictures).

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