Mar 27, 2008

Whose Kool-Aid?

So yesterday, sometime around noon, Steve Rubel (the PR guy, not the late Studio 54 owner) tweeted about my "10 Things I Hate About Twitter" post and all hell broke loose.

Okay, not really, but The Toad Stool was getting about 400 hits an hour for the next few hours off of this five word tweet. (That's at least 10 times the normal amount for that time of day.)
At first I was thinking it was proof of the growing popularity of Twitter, but upon reflection, I'm thinking it's as much due to that as it is to the cult-like status of Steve Rubel.

Among the many comments I received, there was one that got me to thinking. One of Rubel's minions, while chastising me for having non-utilitarian Twitter friends, mentioned that he only links to people who provide him with great insights via their useful links.

And that lead me to wonder if the ultimate path of Twitter is to be a place where we learn from experts, rather than share with friends. I mean at some level it makes sense: Twitter, by virtue of its non-reciprocal Follower/Following paradigm, could allow us to follow people we deemed experts and leaders. Which could be anyone from Steve Rubel to Steve Jobs to Steve Nash.

They'd send out links, wise thoughts and whatnot, for their followers to absorb on a daily basis. Heck, we could even monetize it and charge a fee for their wisdom. I've suggested that using a celeb's tweets from a relevant event would be a good marketing use of Twitter, so why not take it to the next level?

Worth contemplating.

PS: A formal thank-you to Brian Morrissey and Bill "Make The Logo Bigger" Green, who jumped onto Rubel's Twitter thread to point out that my post was tongue-in-cheek and not a Luddite screed from a true hater.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Chiming in again. Didn’t see the hardcore Rubel follower comments though. ;-p.

And here I thought social media was for people to do with it what they want. You use it your way, I’ll use it mine kinda thing. Guess I’m wrong again.

There’s this attitude with not only Twitter, but many new social m sites, that if you’re not shilling your site or business, and instead choosing to have more casual conversations, that somehow you're not to be taken as serious as those who do.

Problem is, that’s the basis for the huge growth on YouTube, MySpace and every other mega community though. It’s everyday people sharing normal life shit, not pushing a “Great new article on SEO best practices!” At 12:00 am—on a Saturday night.

You can keep pushing that stuff 24/7 if you want, but all it does is make you look like the guy at the party walking around handing out business cards to everyone.

Maybe sometimes, you should just chill and have a drink.