On Aspects of Twitter and Facebook

This post was also published on my blog Random Bloggings, where you can learn more about my trials and tribulations in life, creativity and the like. –Spyros

Tonight I’m the proverbial midnight blogger, well, ok, I’m starting this at 10:48pm. Also, I don’t make a living blogging, although if someone wants to hire me…

You know, I look at all this web 2.0/social media stuff that’s going on out there, and I still find it difficult to fully engage and sometimes even understand the point, at a visceral level, of some of the stuff going on out there. Like facebook for instance. I cognitively understand the concept and purpose behind facebook, but don’t find myself using it much. I understand it to be a way to keep in touch with family and friends, share things about yourself, but all I see though is one great big quiz site where you can let everybody know how evil you are or which housewife you are or what your geek level is, or whatever. And sure, I can see all of these quizzes showing the tiniest glimmer of insight into the person you might be, and if you had some great big quiz aggregator that took all the quiz results for each person out there on facebook and ran them through some kind of horrific equation that was developed by Sheldon Cooper from “The Big Bang Theory” you might just get a reasonably accurate personality profile that let you know that your brother’s new girlfriend’s best friend’s college roommate might just be your twin and soul mate, or a serial killer, well maybe that would be useful. Maybe. Maybe the FBI could use that, or those guys on CSI.

What I’m really getting at is that I’m still finding it difficult to engage myself at a level that is useful to me (and by useful I mean both entertaining and socially worthwhile) without it being a total time sink. This is where Twitter comes in. Someone somewhere on the web said that Twitter is just facebook status updates without the rest of facebook. (I will happily credit the quote if anyone knows who it is. I don’t remember.) It’s simplistic, but that person was right. Twitter is the best of facebook for me, and then some because of the simplicity of it. I love it because my friend in Arkansas can tweet, “I’m thinking about getting an iPhone, any thoughts?” and being the technophile I am, I can tweet with her about it, share what I know and tell her that I’ll be jealous if she gets one. (I do love my Blackberry though!)

Twitter is the best of web 2.0 in my opinion, because it allows you to do all the things the new web is “supposed” to do. You can engage with people, broadcast your own content, receive information about topics you are interested in, contribute to conversations you care about, promote yourself, coordinate a revolution, promote a business or charity, You can share news, you can receive news, on and on… and yes, I know you can do all of this on facebook too. I just happen to think Twitter allows it to be done better, for me anyway.

So I like Twitter, and I’m on Twitter and you can follow me @heniadis if you’re interested.

So how does this relate to anything else, or arts and culture more specifically? Well, as you might know, I like to take pictures, and I like to think they have some artistic value, and I even like to think I could quite possibly eke out a living through the proliferation of my artwork and related skills and talents. An easy way to do that has yet to manifest itself to me, (and countless other artists out there for that matter) but I have been starting to think about how I can use Twitter as a way to promote myself and maybe get a step or two closer to eking out that living.

But I want to do it in a way that isn’t carnival-barker-creepy-car-salesman-spammer-kingpin-like. So I’ve been very tentative, and the first self promotion tweet will go out to announce the posting of this post. Baby steps.

–Spyros Heniadis

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