This is my twitter story.
I am quite annoyed at myself for falling for its charms, for it seriously has eaten into what I am very otherwise very ‘stingy’ about - my time (after all that is the only non-replenishable resource given to us?).
But I would not have it any other way, and if you ask me why, my answer is - Twitter is about Connections, Learning, Community.
What do these three words translate to?
It translates to participation, vibrancy, caring, criticism, growth, networks, relationships, entertainment, dialogue, conversations-replete with (virtual) food, coffee, drinks, weather, family, pets, in-laws, mood swings, boss, co-workers – you name it, and more.
In the time I have been on twitter I have read some excellent thoughts and writing in all the areas of my interest, from @ewanmcintosh on education; @BrandMilitia and @davidarmano on advertising, branding and marketing @SamLawrence and @Shelisrael on knowledge management and social media and @newmediajim in news.
These and some other names I follow simply for the leadership in their fields they provide. Many aspects of knowledge management which engage me are here for the taking and it delights me to be part of this network. I follow @ikepigttot, @batterista, @alexdc as they tweet on social media and development.
Authors and artists, geeks and gurus - Twitter provides opportunity to connect with experts in all areas, whether it is Darren Rowse as Problogger in blogging, or Anita Campbell on small business and women in small business. When Janet mentions me in her blog ( where I am delighted that I am eponymous with ‘Mumbai’) or @evansdave comments on my blog or @hiway tweet a good morning to me - I am reminded yet again, how closely knit and small the world is or can be-the barriers or distances are in our heads and hearts, not measured in miles or time. Often it is night for them when it is morning for me.
I have connected with @elsbar and @BeckyDMBR who to my unending amazement find it in their heart and time to check on me- even if just an hello (hint for someone in Mumbai : are you reading?). Becky as a mother of three including one pair of twins does an amazing work of talks and blog to help others deal with issues in bringing up twins (or multiple birth issues). Having @SusanReynolds story is yet another one that is close to me as it reminds me of my mom, who battled and gave in to the illness but never gave up on life, energy or enthusiasm. On some days reading some of her tweets is painful and I find that I want to unfollow them and yet, in some way helps me deal with myself.
People on twitter are 'generous'. Who share not just 'what they are doing' but their stories and their lives through updates, blogposts, pictures, advice, support and most times, just plain talk - the glue that holds people together. Just as @Leonardo and @Shawnz light up my twitter stream with their music and quotes.
My Indian twitter friends many of whom are students or just into their jobs, tweet about food, travel, gaming, technology, projects, cricket, gadgets, movies and music. The IIT kgp team have shared tweets as they dealt with studies, wing mates, food and farewells. Tweets from @Preshit reminds me of a Hrishikesh Mukherjee film albeit circa 2008, web 2.0 version.
Twitter is seeing another person through his/her eyes and not through ours as we tend to do all the time otherwise.
Twitter really is a big congregation of sleepy, workaholic, normally happy people - I like to believe encompassed in a circle of love and life- and I enjoy the flow.
On some days the whole followers and friends thingy is also really not anything other than simply a tool of managing your 'tweet inbox'. Everyone on twitter is related to someone directly or indirectly through some degree of separation not necessarily six. I imagine meeting someone and saying, You follow Jane do you, she happens to be the friend of my follower @Nitin. Do you know @Milan? Milans sister works with @Amit
You get the idea. Big World, Small town. Everyone knows everybody. Everyone asks, & knows 'What are you doing'.
Best of all,
a. The people who run twitter also are on twitter. Quite like the little painted board at RamaNayaks hotel in Matunga, Mumbai, that reads, “The owner eats here”. So one can also @ev
b. While there are iconic personalities such as @guykawasaki and @scobleizer really, on twitter there are no A- listers.
It is about perspectives not prophets.
Is twitter a temporary indulgence in my life or will it last? I hope it does, for it has great value in building a network, marketing, branding and working - never mind what work it is that one does. And I haven't touched at all on aspects such as the simple fun, the way news is first on twitter, it's simplicity & ease of use, the various twitter clients etc.
For more erudite, professional, rational, coherent, (and excellent) posts on twitter read Sam Lawrence or Janet Lee Johnson . And of course all the links to articles on twitter I have carefully selected for this post.
Update: 101 uses of Twitter- Another must-read!