I wouldn’t say I’m a Luddite but lately I have been feeling a little behind the times. Alright, actually I have been feeling quite a bit behind the times for quite a while. Years, really.
Back when we first launched Hook and Eye we also set up a Twitter account for the blog. The idea was to generate as much presence as possible, naturally. I also set up a personal account. I did this primarily because I needed one to access our Hook and Eye account and tweet from time to time. I tweeted precisely once between September 2010 and spring 2011. Quite frankly, I forgot I had an account…until one day I receive a message notifying me that I had a new follower.
Curious, and somewhat sheepish, I reintroduced myself to the site. I scrolled through the most popular tweets and searched for people I knew. As it turns out a great majority of my friends, acquaintances, and colleagues tweet all the time. Many of you are prolific tweeters! So tell me, what am I missing? In an age where I am (happily, mostly) connected to my smartphone and my laptop for the greater part of the day, an age where I check my various email accounts (personal, professional) regularly and try to keep my various digital presences current and au courant, do I need to consider tweeting as well?
I know, social media has revolutionary potential. But does it have academic revolutionary potential? In 2007 Clive Thompson posited that Twitter creates social proprioception. I love that hypothesis. I also love the way that constant live updates from colleagues in the profession might change the structure and scope of what we do for the better… I fear digital exhaustion, but I would hate to be missing out on the professional and pedagogical possibilities that new media continues to create.
Tell me readers, do you use Twitter for professional purposes? Have you used it in a classroom? Is it a truly useful mode of networking, collaborating, and generally forging community? Or is it just another way to procrastinate?
You can answer me here or–deep breath–@erinwunker