Sunday, April 18, 2010

Archiving Twitter

I've heard plenty of people say that the publishing industry expects its authors, even undiscovered ones, to have a following on Twitter and Facebook. I'm new to Twitter and I'm still learning its nuances (and to some degree, the point).

Last week, the Library of Congress announced that it would archive "tweets." Let me repeat this: The Library of Congress will archive tweets.

What does that say about the American written word?
What does that say about the pace of our lives?
What does that say about our desire to read?

With my background in journalism, I can say just about anything in 140 characters. In the newspaper industry, we call this a headline.

So, I say nothing more for or against Twitter. Any new technology for connecting people has the capacity to improve our lives. I can't help but think we're breeding a generation of voyeurs and exhibitionists who see life as a performance and not something to share with those around us in that old-fashioned, face-to-face kind of way.

Yet, I also think it's really cool that I can monitor all sorts of people from all around the world, potentially with interests similar to mind, without having to say hello and introduce myself.

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