Thailand University Teacher Extraordinaire

The trials and tribulations of a young English teacher

Introducing The One Month Twitter Experiment

on Tue,May,2012

I’ve never been a fan of Twitter. Since I became aware of its inception, I’ve had an image of it being a place where people broadcast their every thought in text speak. I’ve seen the service constantly praised and lauded by news networks like the BBC and CNN, and I’ve grown sick of and disillusioned with the site without having experienced it myself.

I’m a person that doesn’t react well to constant hype about a product or service. If I’m constantly being told how amazing something is, my reaction is to go to great lengths to avoid it to prevent disappointment. The Harry Potter novels are probably the best example of this. I suspect that had I discovered the series myself, or had a single friend recommended the first volume to me, I would have had countless hours of enjoyment and lost hours of sleep over several nights as I convinced myself to read just one more chapter. Alas, it wasn’t to be. People from all walks of life seem to take great glee in selfishly revealing every major plot twist or revelation. I’m afraid I’ve reached the point where there are no surprises left, and the enjoyment I will get from the series will be a shadow of what it would have been had I discovered the books myself.

As well as excessive hype, I get irritated by empty buzzwords, which seem designed to ‘sex up’ something that is mediocre or pointless. When I hear one of these magical words, it’s almost as if a signal is sent to my brain telling it to shut down or brace for impact – there’s a huge dose of verbal diarrhea heading this way. Words like ‘tweets’ and ‘trending’ and ‘hash tags’ are usually mentioned in the same breath as Twitter, and they have so far added to my reluctance to join the site.

However, I’m going to give it a try. If I can be choosy with the users I follow and avoid turning my account into one big vanity project, it just might become a useful tool that I can get a lot of use and enjoyment from. On day one, I’ve decided to follow 15 accounts, which include…

Derren Brown – Psychologist and magician extraordinaire
Tim Harford – Economist and writer
Michael Moore – Film maker and activist
Richard Branson – Entrepreneur and explorer
Stephen Fry – Actor, author, groan, and Apple advocate
Eddie Izzard – Comedian and actor
Nottingham Forest Football Club – The biggest source of pain in my life

I’m going to avoid actively seeking out followers of my own, though people are free to follow me if they desire. I don’t foresee many meaningful tweets coming from my account though. You can find me here

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