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Tweet rant

October 20th, 2009 | Posted by Amy Boughner in Personal

I love Twitter. I love that I can connect with people there. I love that Twitter makes my job easier. I love that I can ask Twitter a question and get a multitude of answers back. I love that I have met some of the people I follow on Twitter and they are all as interesting, if not more interesting, offline. I love that I’ve had great conversations with people I never would have otherwise met because someone their interests and mine converged on Twitter.

I love Twitter.

But today Twitter is driving my batty.

There are limits to all mediums, certainly, and Twitter is no exception, and today the limits are making my life a bit difficult.

Usually when people who aren’t on Twitter discuss it they complain about the 140 character limit. Personally, I find the 140 character limit somewhat useful. You have to be clear, concise and sometimes you have to edit yourself to fit into the limit. There are those who don’t edit themselves – they link tweet after tweet to say everything they want to say or mess with good grammar and spelling, use IM-speak or otherwise make themselves a bit less comprehensible.

(I know that I am among the minority as a person who still takes the time to spell out all her words and properly punctuate, no matter the format, but I don’t think I’m going to change and I’m not going to stop being somewhat annoyed at people who don’t take the time depending on the format).

The problem with Twitter is the problem with all written communication – there is an overwhelming likelihood that people will miss your tone or your point because they are reading something differently than you meant it to be read. There have been times when explaining what my point of view is when someone has misunderstood just seemed like too much effort to undertake on Twitter. You don’t want to sound defensive, but it’s annoying when someone just isn’t getting it and you can’t understand why they’re not getting it because you’re only getting 140 characters from them.

And when you’re seven and a half months pregnant, you tend to get more frustrated more quickly than the average person – and I don’t think I ever had the fuse length of an average person. My husband, who has much more patience with these things than I do (which also frustrates me) says I should just take a breather and step back from Twitter for a while, because none of this is going to matter an hour from now, but for me it’s just not that simple. Twitter is a source for me, and my job depends on sources, so I’m just going to have to suck it up and move on.

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