Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Tweet it

Twitter has increasingly expanded its wedge of my internet pie. With all of Australian journalism (particularly Crikey and ABC) suddenly discovering intelligent life on the internets, I've had to seriously restructure my twitter lists.  The list of journos is getting longer and I can't lump them under whoever they work for. But Chris Masters sounds a timely warning, its isn't always something to encourage either. Nevertheless, I've learnt a lot about Australian media from the recent trends, some ongoing like #lolbolt and #powerfox, some event-specific like the Liberal Party #spill which has been elevated into a twittermeme. And some, like #lateline exist independently of their media outlet @Lateline.

As with any emergent internet community, there are sharks and hangers-on. Fortunately you can classify these in a list without having to follow them, so now I have a list to keep an eye on those not-quite-human twitterers and block them if need be. The main issue I have with Twitter is managing its bandwidth. Unless you go looking for an event-related trend (which often causes server dropouts), this means people who are practically broadcasting stations in themselves. I'm looking at you, Kevin Smith and Stephen Fry.

But politically it's an eye-opener. The reporting on the Copenhagen talks, #cop15 is outstanding and in real time. There are stories here that are not getting mainstream airtime at all, such as the treatment of protesters, and widespread anger at the many manipulations of those inside. Of course there's also comic relief and the odd prank (oz_f scooped this by days). So the future looks bright for tragics like myself.

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