I have, as the popular imagery prefers, put on my sunglasses and stepped out of my cave to join the Twenty-First Century. In other words, I now have a Twitter account.
At the moment, I have no idea what I’m going to do with it. I know Twitter wouldn’t be nearly as popular as it is without copious quantities of snark. I’m unsure, however, how well my personal blend of curmudgeon and snark will fit into 140 characters. I’m trying to train my fingers to only put one space after a period. That should save me three or four characters per tweet right there.
So, if the notion of a fish tweeting amuses or intrigues you, you’re more than welcome to follow @CaseyKarp.
And, for anyone who was concerned, this special administrative announcement will not affect the regularly-scheduled posts. More of my usual grouchiness tomorrow, and a Very Special Cat Post on Friday.
“Tweeting” seems to be the point at which I have taken leave from popular culture. I have a (recently purchased) “smart” phone and am now, occasionally, texting, but I see no useful point- or, rather, no point at all- in the “tweet” thing, other than to suck up some more of my time and attention in unnecessary ways.
This all reminds me of the time- the mid-80s- when I lost track of popular music, right around the time of the J. Geils Band (I know; they were actually early 80s) and Thomas Dolby. One day I was hip and up on all the new bands, the next I was out of it, and platinum selling bands I’d never heard of were doing reunion tours.
But, inexplicably, pop music has gone on without me, and I suspect social media will stagger on, somehow, without my participation.
Bottom line? I not only don’t need to know what all my friends are doing, all the time, I don’t even want to know. Shocking, I know. Uncaring? Yes, by definition but, just as good fences are said to make good neighbors, lack of minute information makes, I think, for a richer conversation, when we meet in person.
That’s my opinion, anyway, and I’m sticking with it.
In all honesty, I agree with you to a great extent. (Sorry, Twitter aficionados.) Part of the reason I held off as long as I did was that I could see how easy it would be for it to turn into a massive time suck.
Most of the rest of the reason was the way it’s clearly designed to encourage people to hold private conversations in public. (Example: I just told Maggie that I’m installing iOS 8 on my iPad, and asked her to pray for me. If I had used Twitter, it would not only allow anyone following me to see that, but would prefer that I include some iOS 8 hashtag to alert the world that I’m deleting half my apps to make room for it.)
However, the frozen truth is that more and more people are forgoing blogs–or at least following blogs–in favor of Twitter. If I’m going to sell books (yes, there will be books someday, and I do want people to read them), I need to be ready to promote them where the audience is. And for at least the next couple of years, until mass attention shifts somewhere else, that means Twitter.
We all have our price. I swore for years my manuscripts would remain unpublished rather than become self-published, but I finally decided I wanted my grandson to have a copy of a published “Seymour’s First Clarinet Concerto” enough to put it up on amazon’s createspace platform. OK, exception to every rule. But I’ll never get a Twitter account. I’ve stopped blogging, I don’t do Facebook, and just don’t want anything sucking the time I could put into writing my books. Your point on sales is valid, but as the days dwindle down to a precious few (thanks, Mr. Weill), we’re seeing the difference between 49 and 75.
The other way to look at that is that you did the promotion that was necessary at the time. Five years ago, a blog was a requirement, but Twitter wasn’t. Ten years ago, at least in some genres, you almost had to be on Second Life.
And, of course, no matter when it is, if you can get the libraries’ attention, you’ve got a big win. (I may be biased, but I do think libraries are still relevant. No apologies to anyone who thinks otherwise.)