Twitter will not tweet for much longer

No longer are birds alone in their tweeting endeavors. Humans are now catching on to the communication style of their winged friends. A social networking site called Twitter allows its users to “tweet” as much as their hearts desire. Twitter burst on to the social scene in 2007 and has since garnered a massive following. The social networking site has an average of 55 million monthly visits and, in February 2009, had a monthly rate higher than both Myspace and Facebook. However, Twitter is still very new and many people are questioning whether it will soar to great heights or just leave bird droppings as it flies off the social radar. Twitter allows its users to send and read text-based posts called “tweets.” Only allowing 140 characters each, tweets are meant to be short and sweet. Some of the tweets contain valuable information that I actually care about. For example, I care a great deal about important news events from around the world. I think the fact that Twitter was used by the Obama campaign is quite groundbreaking. Politicians are now able to reach out and educate a broader audience via the website. Furthermore, I greatly appreciate Twitter’s ability in allowing emergency help organizations to send out important statistics and directions. The site also has helped in spreading the news of an event more quickly. For instance, in the 2008 Mumbai attacks, eyewitnesses tweeted about the event before news agency even knew about it. More recently, I enjoyed reading the reactions of various celebrities regarding the death of Michael Jackson. Lindsay Lohan, for instance, tweeted, “NO OMG … sending my love and prayers out to Michael and his family … i feel sick…” No one cared to tell Lindsay that her ill feeling may be from the massive amount of alcohol she probably consumed the night before, but that’s beside the point. Miley Cyrus also commented on his death, tweeting, “michael jackson was my inspiration. love and blessings.” I wonder how much inspiration for Hoedown Throwdown came from Michael Jackson. I must admit that most of the twitter pages I do read belong to celebrities. For instance, I enjoy reading tweets from Oprah because, in all honesty, she knows all. Britney Spears also has an interesting Twitter page to visit, especially after it has been hacked. Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore both have separate Twitter pages. I wonder if they get into fights about how many followers they each have. Ashton is leading with a whopping 3,367,802 compared to Demi’s 1,897,591. I sincerely hope that the competition doesn’t strain their marriage. Many normal people, however, use and abuse Twitter. For one, people who believe that others enjoy reading about how they are eating a croissant on their couch in the middle of the day are delusional. One or two pointless tweets can be allowed, but when someone tweets every 5 minutes, they have gone too far. These pointless posts render Twitter useless. Unless you have something interesting to say, please refrain from tweeting. While I find many aspects of Twitter useless, I could see myself using the site as a way to contact my friends and family. However, I don’t think I know anyone who uses Twitter, and, if I do, I’m probably already friends with them on Facebook. With that stated, I don’t think that Facebook is necessarily better than Twitter. One of the best aspects of Twitter is the fact that it allows its users to have almost instant access to vast amounts of information. For instance, I can type “Melrose Place” into Twitter’s easy-to-use search engine and read thousands of people’s opinions regarding the show. Also, with its “following” feature, Twitter is able to update its users whenever someone they are following posts anything, regardless if the user is on a computer or not. Because it allows its users to easily link to any other site, Twitter has a large fan base with celebrities, bloggers, politicians, and self-promoters. On the other hand, many average users find the ability to follow a wide range of people, whether or not they know the user or not, very interesting and more far-reaching than Facebook. The simple reason why I prefer Facebook over Twitter is because I started using Facebook first. Twitter does little to nothing to differentiate itself from Facebook. Both social networking sites pride themselves on connecting people and both do virtually the same thing to do so. If Twitter wants to succeed in the social networking business, it’s going to have to create something new that lures Facebook users to the site. After weighing all of its pros and cons, I have complete faith that Twitter will not survive any longer than 2 years. With an average retention rate of 40%, it’s almost impossible to believe that its longevity will be any longer. As time passes, I am positive that the retention rate will decrease. Furthermore, I am certain that the number will decrease with the appearance of other social networking sites that I am sure are already in development. Regardless of its popularity now, we will soon see Twitter soaring into pop culture obscurity, tweeting its way into the virtually-produced sunset.