Sunday, September 23, 2012

Lazy consumers

I have been on twitter since the time I heard about it (around 4 years ago?). But I never really tweeted. 140 characters to express myself is just too less for a talkative guy like me. Also I am not funny enough to sound witty in less words. However, the tweets I found interesting, I did re-tweet them. After a while, I thought I clean up my tweet history and so for major part of the 4 years, my tweeter timeline shows 0 tweets with occasional re-tweets popping up for sometime then going back to 0.

But does that mean I don’t use twitter? NOT at all. I love twitter, its my main source of information after my Google Reader. Everyday religiously, I login to twitter from my phone and read all the tweets, follow links and get my updates. My phone shows that after Facebook (the perennial time drain!) twitter is the app that consumes most of my bandwidth!

Anyway, the point I am trying to make is – not tweeting doesn’t mean that I don’t “use” twitter nor does it mean that my account is “fake” or “spam”. I am very much an active consumer. Twitter for me is like watching TV or YouTube – I don’t produce my own videos or programs but I actively consume it.

Now there are new websites in the wild that classify users into spam or real accounts depending on the following criteria:

“On a very basic level spam accounts tend to have few or no followers and few or no tweets. But in contrast they tend to follow a lot of other accounts”.

That’s unfair and wrong on many accounts and I wanted to protest, till I figured there are people similar to me. 40% of tweeter users actually just read tweets. We are an active part of the ecosystem and twitter happily acknowledges our existence and is trying hard to monetize us. Relieved I am. Now I can be peacefully shy on twitter and be completely worthless on blogger! Sigh the pressures of a social life!

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