Is Twitter valuable?

Twitter is a free online service for friends, family, and co-workers to communicate and stay connected from one to another through the quick connection of  Internet for exchanging frequent answers and questions (James Bucki). However, Twitter has now 32 millions users and an increase is found from a year ago, according to the research from Wall Street Journal (Wall St., 2009). A number of large companies, in terms of businesses and celebrities are using it and they have more than a hundred of followers even it limits users to use only 140 characters or fewer for a tweet.

According to Steve Johnson, it is one certain thing that Twitter makes a terrible impression when one only allowed to send a limited characters to update status but it has been one of the largest platforms in the the world for sharing real-time conversation and data (McIntyre, 2009). The Twitter’s creator claimed that there were reasons for Twitter to limit the characters of tweets which is the threat of attention span on long posting blogging with links and articles. However, this limitation actually turns out to have unsuspected path that Clive Thompson calls it “ambient awareness”. It allows you to get a satisfying glimpse from the tweets from friends or family by updating a short and quick status where Twitter allows you to know without even asking it. In short, Twitter is the most fascinating thing that allows us to do what we do to it, not what it does to us (Johnson, 2009).

As it grows, Twitter has become one of the marketing tools for most companies to communicate with customers, build brands, do research and conduct e-commerce. Wal-Mart is one of the good examples transformed by Twitter in order to inform and have opportunity to tell customers about promotions and new products at remarkably low cost when it allows to provide greater geographic accuracy (Wall St., 2009).

Moreover, some celebrities, such as the most famously Ashton Kutcher have crossed a million followers on Twitter which effectively gives them a huge broadcast-size of audiences (Johnson, 2009). Twitter seems like a mix media experience which has about not just one particular thing but a handful of celebrities, colleagues or a collage of friends. Undeniably, Twitter is not just a communication platform to stay connected with friends and family, it is more like a live reporter which gives you in-the-moment conversation than an abundance of information (Johnson, 2009).  Google is a good example which indicates Twitter is a more effectively supplier which needs longer time to build audiences; if you’re looking for interesting sites about hacker leaks nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence, you search Google. If you are looking for comments from your social network about how the nude photo is criticized and talked about, you go to Twitter.

In addition, Twitter is more than a communication platform nowadays which threatens and causes a lot of problems in journalism. Furthermore, Twitter is more like a pressure or threat for politics. The origin of journalism changes when Twitter users are now defined as influencers who actually have the greater power of changing or influencing politics. One of the facts that e-journalism seems to be a problem in Canadian politics where citizen journalists were mistaken of using Twitter as a way to report news.

Discussion on Canadian politics by The Insiders about how Twitter influences public and changes the way how we live.


7 thoughts on “Is Twitter valuable?

  1. I think you combine your own point well with the examples sourced from this weeks set readings.Twitter has become the place of globalised chatter, as you state it gives you current information in real time, much like a real life conversation. The difference is that unlike person to person conversation, this exchange of information is on a monumental scale. Grouping conversations through hashtags where a plethora of different viewpoints are being expressed. A digital water cooler that has become vital specifically in relation to news and entertainment. Even politicians have become vocal twitter users amongst other notable figures like Ashton Kutcher. Often this can be to their own detriment examples abound of careless tweets which have caused mass outrage and have been detrimental for individuals. I agree that it is less static than other social media platforms, as the conversation continues to unfold as it did with the nude photos scandal. Its interesting how social media platforms as you say have been utilised for business means. I remember when twitter and instagram first became popular and how vastly different the digital landscape is now as compared to before. Its amazing how business will even evolve to implement social media techniques to gain greater market share.


  2. Overall a great post! I like how you mixed the current new sources with the set sources ! Walmart is a great example of how a business can effectively use Twitter, in addition to this though there are also many companies using twitter well as Buzzfeed points out ( You raise a great point with the idea that Twitter is more then just a communication platform now; as just a (very) casual user of Twitter even I have noticed that most of the trivial post regarding what people are having for breakfast or what they are wearing are no longer being seen (most of that can be found on Instagram) and that more and more information and breaking news stories are being reported. Your example of the leaked nude scandal is a great case study to see how conversations and discussions are never static or stalled given the huge numbers of people contributing to them. Nice Work!


  3. I definitely agree with you that Twitter and other aggregation sites are highly valuable in our world today where the nature and scope of journalism is no longer centralized and structured as before. They are the backbone of citizen journalism that propel thoughts and opinions of every writer on to the main stage. As we have discussed in previous lectures, the Internet is free for entry in terms of cost and gatekeeping, naturally the virtual space would be flooded with tonnes of information; and one of the limited ways for a piece to garner the attention it deserves is for it to catch on on these aggregation sites. Valuable? Absolutely.


  4. Despite the impacts of Twitter in journalism and politics, I personally find Twitter as a very useful communication platform. Just like the example of Wal-Mart that you have given, there are also many companies in Malaysia are using Twitter as one of their marketing tools to communicate with their customers. For instance, DiGi – one of the top leading Telco companies in Malaysia is using Twitter to promote their services and also to interact with their customers. Hence, I can tweet DiGi whenever I have enquiry about their product and services instead of calling the hotline which I think it helps to make my life easier.


  5. I think it’s great that you discuss the evolution of Twitter here – that’s something that I haven’t seen in any other blogs from this week in DIGC202. The fact that it was designed as a social tool, and has very much become a business tool is a great example of how networks evolve over time, and how users have ultimate control over the ways in which they use media.

    I found the video to be a very practical source, and I can’t flaw your discussion! Great post.


  6. A very detailed blog post on the evolution of Twitter and its growing significance in engaging global communication on current issues. I think one of the reasons that makes Twitter valuable is that Twitter is able to engage and provoked a great deal of comments coming from various perceptions and standpoints on an issue. Further, our shifting perception and behavior toward homogeneous of time and space is also what makes Twitter valuable. With our shorter attention span and demand toward quick and short update on people and things around us,Twitter is simple, fluid, fast and accessible. We get news as things happen, and we know what’s going on in the entire world just by clicking what’s trending which is very convenient.


  7. I always use Twitter’s hashtags to search for the concurrent and most updated news as it is updated by users themselves. I love to see how people comment and give ideas to various types of news and discussions. However, it sometimes I don’t quite trust on Twitter’s news tweeted by users themselves as I doubt that is is credible not.


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