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The number of likes, followers, thanks or pageviews a site or person gains doesn't mean that this person or site is especially important or newsworthy it just means its popular. This is especially true with Twitter. This new form of dispersing information is best for small bites of information or giving people links to articles to check out. At its worst people divulge unwanted personal information. When a loved one is sick or when you are going on vacation isn't just off topic it is inappropriate for public consumption. If someone's primary contribution to the internet are tweets through a Twitter account it isn't substantial or important.
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Twitter is the modern version of a ticker tape from old Wall Street or the silent radio popular in the eighties and nineties. It was only a matter of time before this concept hit the internet. Instead of one source determining content, the feeds now draw on several sources. The problem with today's silent radio is people think it is normal to broadcast your innermost thoughts, problems and struggles. Imagine if you have a silent radio (as this writer did in highschool) and on it people's personal thoughts or problems were broadcast before the entire school. Pretty inappropriate. Now take that to the next level of the internet which reaches a far larger audience. This is a major problem in today's society.
Having a successful Twitter page and following however doesn't mean that you are a journalist or a writer especially if you aren't writing anything more than a tweet (140 characters). People use Twitter for selfish reasons like gaining exposure, because they are bored, and to hold conversations. It can be used for positive useful reasons as well like dispersing important original information. Unfortunately mostly inane babble goes on in Twitterland. (just like the show Keeping Up With The Kardashians, this blogger has had it on in the background on accident a few times and could not believe the utter crap that was being discussed.) So are all Twitter Feeds a joke then? Or should there be a few respectable places where Twitter allows people to gain real information?
Having a Twitterfeed on DNAinfo.com that is decluttered and free of unimportant tweets is crucial to keeping people in Rogers Park up to speed with new information. Having private citizens on this Twitter Feed if they aren't contributing original or useful information clogs it up with junk. If someone is simply giving one liners and linking people up to random articles, this is not creative or important work. However if someone is contributing crucial and entertaining information, pictures or commentary on another site or blog or promoting their business that is worth tweeting. For instance Bill Morton backs projects, fundraisers and causes worth supporting. That is newsworthy. Craig of Broken Heart comes up with original articles and news and these would work well on Twitter. Alderman Joe Moore disperses important Ward information. Restaurants like Morsel, Leonas, theatres like Mayne Stage, Lifeline and organizations like Occupy RP have tweets that come through to DNAinfo.com's Twitter Feed as well they should.
But Kyle Hillman, RogersParker and Gerald Farinas for the most part are just retweeting national news. This is not novel or interesting and it waters down an otherwise informative Twitter Feed. Its obvious that Kyle Hillman wants a career in politics and has written great articles for the Huffington Post. His Twitter account is almost 100 percent retweets of articles seemingly just there to promote his brand and Curriculum Vitae. Where is his blog of political anaylsis and thoughts? Because a Twitter account is not anywhere near the same as maintaining a blog or important body of work.This is distracting from the real news of the day. How about Kyle just tweet after he has written a political analysis or an original article? Because there is such thing as too much Kyle Hillman cutesy one liners and political article links.
Gerald's Twitter account is the most offensive because it includes unwanted personal information including when and where he is going on vacation or who is in the hospital. Is this the brave new world of the internet? Living your life in front of the public? Gerald Farinas has claimed that he didn't know his Twitter account was broadcasting onto DNAinfo.com. If this is true that is not something to be proud of. This kind of ignorance is scary. He has so many followers that he doesn't know where his personal information is being broadcast. Is this not something to be worried about? Or is it now normal for the younger generation to tweet personal details to the world at large and this is news?