What is Twitter?

by Geeks on Tour:  Twitter can be used to keep up with the RVing, or any other, community.  So many people ask me about Twitter, it must be time for an article.  I like to explain by example, so let me show you how I’m using Twitter.  I just visited my Twitter home page, and this is what I saw:


I feel like I’m walking into a room where there are lots of people milling about and talking.  The cool part is that these are all people I’ve chosen for one reason or another, it’s my special party room.  And they aren’t too talkative, just a few words about what they’re doing or what they’re thinking.  In less than a minute of glancing at my Twitter home page, I’m up-to-date with all the people I’m ‘Following.’

Let me introduce you around.  The first person you see at my party represents Public Earth.  These are people we met at The Rally.  They are launching a special website about places.  You can find and view these places using a Google Maps interface, store your places in your Public Earth account, and download them to your dashtop GPS for directions.  I think it’s something I’m really going to like – and I won’t forget about it because I’m following their ‘tweets.’

Next comes GypsyJournal – this is Nick Russell, a fulltime RVer, and a friend.  I usually follow his blog, but that takes a lot more time than just seeing him at my Twitter party!  Because of this post, I see that he’s getting ready to go to the Escapades – and we’ll see him there.

Now you see Charlene Li – I’ve never met Charlene.   She is an author and a speaker; a recognized expert in the new Social Media and what it all means.  I value her opinion.  She liked the new Star Trek … I’ll bet I will too.

EMasie is Elliott Masie.  I know Elliott from back in the 80s when he produced the Computer Training and Support Conferences and I was a speaker there.  He is a top thinker and trendsetter in the education field and I love being able to see what he’s up to in such an easy, quick, unobtrusive way.  I’m sure I’ll enjoy his tweets from India.

If you want to start your own party, just go to Twitter.com and sign up for a free account.  Then you can find other people who are on Twitter and click the ‘Follow’ button below their names, voila!  instant party.  If you also start writing some of your own tweets, you may find that some people start following you.  If you have a business, this can be used for marketing.  My latest tweet was about how I was looking for membership site software for my latest website … within minutes, I received an email that a membership site software business was now ‘following’ me on Twitter.  That means that I’ll show up in their party room, but they’re not in mine unless I follow them.

Do you need to be on Twitter?  Of course not.  But, if you’re already spending time online visiting people’s blogs and otherwise browsing – you may actually find that Twitter saves you time.  The RV.net blog can be followed on Twitter – as can the Family Motor Coach Ass’n.  Once you’re looking at RV.net’s Twitter page, you may want to check out who’s at their party!  See who RV.net is following, and you may want to follow them too.  It is so quick and easy to fill your party room with people you enjoy.

So, what’s the difference between Facebook and Twitter?  Facebook is a lot more complex.  I haven’t figured out Facebook yet.  Twitter is nice and simple – at least so far!  It allows you to write short snippets (tweets) about what you’re doing or thinking, it allows others to follow your tweets, and you to follow others.

If you’re interested in learning more about the phenomenon that Twitter is becoming, you can watch this video by the founder of Twitter, Evan Williams.

Chris Guld, www.GeeksonTour.com
Twitter: http://twitter.com/GeeksOnTour
and http://twitter.com/chrisguld

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