Am I the only one in the world that uses Twitter and asks himself every day “Why am I using this tool”? I get a little angry when I talk about fads like Twitter because there is no point for them. I have tried to use Twitter for just over 6 months now and I quit! My twitter account is being closed and never opened again. I just want to let some frustrations out about why I think this tool is so useless it is not even funny.
- 140-character message limit – I get this, I really do get why they wanted to make this limitation. Sometimes a nice short sweet message is all you need to say “Hey everyone check out this article on paper airplanes” But everything you type counts towards that limit. URLs count, peoples long user names count if you want to @mention them. So your message is normally about 6 words once you get the rest in. What the heck can you say in 6 words. Some people love that feature I think it is the reverse of progress.
- The need to shorten URLs – Great another account I have to sign up for. Is anyone else getting sick of signing up for accounts that other accounts rely on? Also now I get to click on links that I have no idea where they go.
- Direct Messages – You cannot direct message someone unless they are following you. WHAT? so now I have to follow ever user that is following me just so they can DM me? now I have a stream of useless tweets I have to sort through because there is no way to change your initial default feed.
- Hash tags – These have to be the worst idea in the world! Anyone can use them and anyone can create them. There is no guide to how you use them it’s just use them to show what topic your tweet is about. This way you can search for hash tags that you like and see more of the conversation. This is great for the first 100 tweets until people start to flood the hash tag with useless tweets.
- Tweet Stream – An endless stream of tweets that have a good tid bit here or there. I know people who use Twitter and because they follow everyone that follows them (see reason 3), they have over 1000+ people they are following. So their Twitter stream is so full of junk tweets you cannot see the forest for the trees. Well what the heck is the point of following a 1000 people if you don’t care what they are saying? So now you have managed to just go out to the internet and take the voices of 1000 people and just dump it on a screen for you to sort and go through. Really? Do I really want more work to do. I though with technology this stuff was suppose to get easier and less work for us.
- The more people that use twitter the less useful it is – Twitter usernames are getting so bad that half your 140 chrs are taken up by someones username in a message. If everyone had 2-10 chr usernames everything would be great. But because Twitter is for some reason so popular you cannot get the name you want so you need to make up some crazy long one.
Here is what I am being told by peopel when I explain tis to them:
“I am not using Twitter properly and that is why I do not understand it” – No I understand it 100% and it’s restarted and the only reason why everyone is using it is because everyone else is.
“Well it allows fast communication to ask a person a question” – Only if your question is less then 140 chr and they are following you, have you ever heard of email? Everyone has it add their address to your addressbook and you can email them any time you want! Even better call the company you know that thing beside your computer at work?
“You just don’t get it” – You finally got it. I Do not get why anyone would use Twitter!
So what may you ask do I use instead of Twitter to pull my content from the internet? I something called RSS feeds. Almost every single site uses them. I have not found a site out there that I want to follow that does not use them. RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. What does that mean? Well really simply you can send out your content to anyone that wants it. Here how it works, you go to CNN or your local newspaper site, you like reading the local news everyday. So I can click on their RSS feed that only shows me local news. Not the entire site feed but just the local news. I then use an RSS reader application (free in Office 2007 and newer or from Google) You give your RSS reader the URL and all new posts from that website shows up in a folder for that feed. When you are done reading a post you delete it just like an email. No signing up for anything no extra account or password needed, just really simple syndication. I have over 100 RSS feeds that all land in their own folder and I delete stuff I don’t want to read and it never shows up again. What a concept organizable data that is stuff you want to see and no need to sign up for another account, just copy the link and paste in your RSS reader.
The one and only thing I have ever seen out there that makes an amazing case for Twitter is for a business that has time slots like the dentist or the hair dresser, they make money by having each slot filled each day. Take the following example scenario. You would call up your dentist and ask for an appointment for today, you get the usual “sorry were all booked up for today” you can call back later to see if there was a cancellation. Twitter would solve this problem perfectly, they could just tell you to follow their Twitter account that is only for cancellations so nothing else is Tweeted on this account other then cancellations. You would follow that account and if they have an opening they would tweet out that there is an open spot today at 1pm. You would see the tweet and call in and book it which would result in a deletion of the original tweet because the spot is filled now. Anyone else checking after that does nto see the tweet because it was deleted.
If you want to use Twitter because you get some use that does not exist somewhere else great, but until they actually make the tool something to be a representation of the 21st century you will not find me on Twitter again!
I would love to know from people why they even use this tool? Why is it you have to use Twitter?
© Caspan 2011