Twitter Is Dead!- Long Live Twitter!

The rule of four is a law that establishes the number of social media platforms that a person can be upon. Said law was developed due to time constraints and an understanding that until the 32 hour day is created there simply isn’t time to participate in all of the available opportunities.

Long before I created said rule I had one that maintained that there wasn’t time for Twitter because it took too much time to maintain multiple blogs and I didn’t see how Twitter would add value.

Some time passes and in December of 2008 I determine that I cannot make an educated decision about Twitter without trying it out.

Hello ...

In less than two weeks I am convinced that Twitter is not only great fun but an excellent resource for making friends, gathering information and for promoting blog posts.

And for quite some time it was nothing but unicorns and rainbows for me- until it wasn’t. That is because we got lazy and started pumping out more links and engaging less.

That we isn’t the royal “we” it is you and I.

Yep, I include myself because when I took advantage of certain tools and resources I added to the chaos. In the midst of that I noticed that I wasn’t engaging as much as I used to. I didn’t have as many conversations and I began to wonder if we had killed Twitter.

Yep, the original Karate Kid and I once exchanged tweets. Pretty nifty stuff.

Anyhoo, a while back some blogging buddies told me that they also wondered if we had killed Twitter so I decided to conduct a little test to determine the truth of the matter.

I asked the Magic 8 Ball if Twitter was dead or alive and it told me that I should ask later. Well that doesn’t fly with me because as an all powerful blogger I am used to instant gratification so shook that sucker silly and found out that Twitter isn’t dead.

It has to be true because everyone knows that the Magic 8 ball doesn’t lie, unless we are talking about that time in college where it told me that the next girl I asked out would say yes. Or the many times it gave me the wrong numbers for the lotto.

Aside from those two situations it is always reliable, really.

Long live Twitter.

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  1. Ted Rubin April 21, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    It is all about what word best for you and accomplishing your goals.

    • Jack April 21, 2012 at 2:54 pm

      Absolutely. I think one of the challenges that people face is their lack of understanding of what opportunities a particular tool offers them. Hard to take advantage of those when you don’t know they exist or have no idea how to take advantage of them.

  2. Matt Clarke April 19, 2012 at 6:18 am

    I had never heard of the rule of 4. Guess how many social sites I am on. Yep 4.

    Personally I find it a little frustrating to have to spend so much time and would really love a tool that can post properly to all of them including g+. Does anyone know of one? Thanks for sharing.

  3. seattledad April 19, 2012 at 5:35 am

    Awesome post Jack. I blog, and Tweet mostly. don’t do FB much at all and haven’t gotten into G+ much yet. I stick with Twitter because of the type of exchanges you posted above. Funny stuff. I am guilty though of doing too much linking and not enough interaction. I guess that makes me part of the problem.

    Long Live Twitter

    • Jack April 19, 2012 at 9:42 am

      Hi James,

      Time is short and we are all really busy. It is easy to find ourselves in a place where we spend more time broadcasting than talking to others.

      I still say that the Mariners should bring back Junior. He is my age which means he is clearly still young enough to play. Used to love to watch him.

  4. Slavica April 18, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    Hello, I remember not wanting to get bothered with Twitter when it started because I thought the trend would fade. I am starting to learn now. I am just learning the language. If the title of a tweet interests me than I don’t have time to read the blog attached to it. I might be a great way to get a lot of people interested to an idea or an event. Can it really affect sales rapidly if utilized for marketing purposes. When utilized for fun, it feels like an exentric text messaging system. With stuff like Twyla coming out, where is twitter going ..

    • Jack April 19, 2012 at 12:12 am

      Hi Slavica,

      My experience is that it can be a wonderful tool and like most tools it is utility lies in the hands of the user.

      Those who are most proficient and skilled will find it to be quite effective.

  5. Absence of alternatives April 18, 2012 at 2:55 pm

    I am addicted to twitter. I love doing driveby tweeting: I @ reply people at random and don’t care if they respond or not. I also use it as my virtual mountain top for shouting out what I have on my mind. It’s therapeutic for me.

  6. Jens P. Berget April 18, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    Hi Jack,

    Twitter is a lot of fun, and so are all the other sites I’ve tried. But I’ve figured out that we need to understand that we’re actually talking to real people and that those people are looking for value and relationships.

    • Jack April 19, 2012 at 12:03 am

      Hi Jens,

      The people are the most important part of social media. That sounds like social media gobbledy gook, but it really is true. When we focus on the people good things happen.

  7. Sia A April 18, 2012 at 10:41 am

    Love the rule of 4 concept. I am actually a little late to the twitter party but making it work anyway. in the shape of having fun with an account that is meant to promote my art.

  8. Kristen April 18, 2012 at 10:20 am

    A rule of four? Interesting. I blog and am on Twitter and I don’t even do those that much…guess I’m behind!

    I hear what you’re saying about Twitter. I’ve haven’t been hanging out there as long as you have, but I do notice that my stream now features far more promotions than actual content. And that reminds me it’s time to create one of those lists to try to filter what I spend my time reading.

    • Jack April 18, 2012 at 11:58 pm

      Hi Kristen,

      Yep, a rule of four. I would like to say that it was based upon something wise and insightful but it was really just an arbitrary decision to go with four social media platforms that I was already using.

      Twitter has been a lot of fun for me, but not so much lately. So I am trying to fix that. Thus far it looks like the new way of doing it is working out.

  9. Vanita April 18, 2012 at 9:15 am

    omg – you did know i’d love this post, didn’t you Jack? let’s see, i have the hated FB but lately i’m tolerant because i’ve been using it more for friends and family rather than another place to have to monitor and keep fresh.
    pinterest has become great fun and is definitely inspiring.
    google + i use to give my circles props and help share their stuff if it’s in my stream. it can be more enjoyable, but i don’t have the time for it.
    linkedin of course is a must.
    twitter is my baby and i guess whether or not you can build relationships on it is based on who you follow and how you intereact. every single person in my support group, i met on twitter. we’ve become great friends and we follow each other’s blogs. To me, the 140 character is great for convos. Ever met someone for the first time and had to sit through their bio, unable to get a word in edgewise? can’t do that on twitter unless you want to send out a stream of tweets (and look silly). also, it’s my way of weeding out people i’d rather not get to know more and finding people who’s blogs i want to read. heck, that’s how i found you Jack. and just yesterday i connected with a vlogger who i should know personally since we’ve spent a lot of time in the same space when i worked in the city. he’s pretty darn cool guy and his vlogs are inspirational and entertaining. and we’ll be having coffee to talk shop (or at least my old shop) next time i’m in the city. it’s how you use it Jack and who you use it with. Plus i find it pretty easy to fit into my day whether i’m with the toddlers or cooking or at my desk.

    • Jack April 18, 2012 at 11:49 pm

      Hi Vanita,

      Twitter has been wonderful to me and I have made some great friends through it. I am really impressed by the wit and wisdom that some people express in those 140 characters.

      It definitely is a useful tool for teaching people how to become a better writer and say more using less.

      The Vlogger connections you mention sounds pretty cool. I love those kinds of stories.

  10. Nicolas Liu April 18, 2012 at 8:37 am

    Sorry, I don’t believe any magic, especially some balls involved.

  11. bob warren April 18, 2012 at 7:23 am

    Have a Fantastic Wednesday!

  12. The Real Matt Daddy April 18, 2012 at 6:20 am

    The benefit of Twitter really depends on your desired result. I know that there are people who say you should be engaging with people on Twitter in order to build relationships, but I find the 140 character limit and the awkwardness of people jumping in on your conversations very limiting to actually “building” anything. Maybe it works for businesses, but not for parents. We’re too darn busy.

    That said, if you, like me, view Twitter as a constant stream of information that you can occasionally take a drink from, it’s not so overwhelming. I tried to explain this to someone once, and I failed miserably. Like any social media, it is what you make of it. I don’t use it to build relationships. I send out a constant stream of parenting-related content that people can follow and pick what they want to read. I am a “broadcaster” so to speak. If I want to build a relationship with you, I will comment on your blog or send you a Facebook message where I have no limits on explaining myself and connecting with you.

    The combination of Triberr/Twitter has more than tripled my audience, so I can’t say that it doesn’t work. I am very thankful for them. I just don’t try to make it more than what it is… a constant stream of info that you can cherry pick at your leisure. Anyway, those are just my two cents.

    • The Real Matt Daddy April 18, 2012 at 7:02 am

      Twitter also has other uses that I take advantage of as well like chatting (#dadchat) or live tweeting during a TV show (#thevoice). But those are scheduled events.

    • Jack April 18, 2012 at 5:44 pm

      Hi Matt,

      Well we see Twitter differently. I haven’t found it difficult to carry on conversations. When I want/need more depth we simply move to a different venue.

      It is the broadcasting that has gotten to be overwhelming at times which is why for my personal use I prefer to mix it up by making sure to try to have conversations with people.

      I don’t think that there is one right way to use it either, it really is subjective.

  13. Betsy Cross April 18, 2012 at 1:45 am

    I only love Twitter because of the quick and random back and forth. It can be fun. To me it’s like going on a walk and waving, smiling, or stopping for a second to chat. Pinterest is a pain. Facebook is funny.

  14. April 17, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    So many people have automated tweets now that it’s hard to engage. I keep telling myself I should be more invested but lately i’ve just found it to be boring.

    • Jack April 17, 2012 at 11:13 pm

      I understand. It really has changed. The question is whether we accept that or make an effort to move it along to the next stage of its evolution.

  15. Andrea April 17, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    Nice. I’ve lost most of my interest in twitter. It has become all links and pr nonsense. It’s just not fun anymore…maybe you can bring it back.

  16. JanB April 17, 2012 at 12:45 pm

    I have to admit that I’m on a few so-called social media sites, but I gave them ‘different roles’ as how they can contribute to me – bloggingwise.
    Facebook – Games, because I like to do that, sometimes…
    Google+ – Being an amateur photographer it lets me follow some cool dudes and dudettes that the the art of photography to a new level…
    Klout – Se what a good guy I really am…
    But overall Twitter is still my number one spot / place / hangout / bar to network a little and met new friends. Oh and when is that 36 hrs day coning through? I am in desperate need of a few extra hours. 4 is enough!

    • Jack April 17, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      Hi Jan,

      That is a sensible approach and something that I have tried to do too. Segmentation as it applies to use should help make it more practical. Unfortunately the time constraint keeps smacking us in the face…regardless. 😉

  17. TechyDad April 17, 2012 at 12:29 pm

    I think there’s some truth in “The Rule of Four.” In my case, though, my day job limits me to two. I simply don’t have time to stay up to date on Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, post to my blog, and any other social network that comes along. For the longest time, it was just Twitter and Blogging for me. Then, I signed up for Google+. For awhile, I tried to shoehorn it into my routine, but now I just browse and occasionally comment there. Mostly, this is due to the lack of third party tools. If I wanted to post to Twitter and Google+, I’d have to copy/paste instead of just selecting Google+ in TweetDeck.

    My time is extremely limited and I believe it is important to do a few social networks well then all of them poorly. Therefore, unless a new social network presents a compelling argument for my time, I’m sticking to blogging and Twitter.

    • Jack April 17, 2012 at 2:54 pm

      Hi TD,

      The rule of four still stretches me a bit more than I want it too. It is hard to be as effective as I want to be. You make an excellent point about the value of using social networks well.

      Those third party tools go a long way but I also think they have helped create some of the noise and dissonance we see on Twitter.

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