Let me tell you a fun – and kind of embarrassing – story. It takes place around 2007, I was studying in university and had a class. One of my classmates was telling about this new thing: it was called Twitter and it was going to be huge. The pitch included things like microblogging (not totally sure if that was word back then) and “now was the time” to register your username before it would blow up and get massive.
So far so good, but this is where it gets embarrassing. I was like: “Ehm, I’m not sure. I mean: why would you register for such a thing when you have MySpace and LiveJournal? I don’t see this happening!”. Fast forward ten years and it’s a bit embarrassing: MySpace and LiveJournal are not a thing anymore (?) and I’m am left without @jantine which was totally free at that time. Sigh.
In the years to come I did try to hop on the bandwagon: I started with a Dutch account which contained mostly complaints about the Dutch railway system – it’s what you do when you’re Dutch. After that I started an account for my art blog. That one actually got me an audience, but because of me responding way too late I never got the interaction everybody is always raving about. Then there’s my current account, where not much is happening.
What is it that doesn’t get me into Twitter? There are so many great people on there, everybody seems to love it, and I often hear the best scoops & conversations can be found on the platform. Yet I’m still not convinced, and here’s why:
- I never see the good stuff. I follow people and I don’t see their tweets, but only the tweets they like. I blocked certain words ‘cause interesting people like all kinds of things that don’t interest me, but my timeline is filled with things and people I don’t care about.
- Overview. I haven’t found how I can see a good overview of a conversation with multiple people joining in.
- The weird break-ins. You know, when you say: “Oh wow, today it’s warm outside!” (best tweet ever!) and a brand replies “It sure is! With our Fresh Lemonade© you will stay cool, have you tried it yet?”. Seriously people: stop doing this.
- Dutch vs. English. Limiting myself to one language is hard! Most people I follow tweet in English, yet the people I want to engage with most are often tweeting in Dutch. Now I mostly just don’t engage, since I don’t want to start talking Dutch on my English account.
- Last but not least: I can’t edit typo’s. Being a non-native English speaker but English tweeter I sometimes see terrible typo’s I’d love to undo. Especially when they’re quick replies made on my phone! There’s no such thing as an edit button however, for understandable reasons, which makes it harder for me to feel like I should get involved in a conversation.
Every now and then I try to spend less time giggling about fluffy alpacas on Instagram and dedicate myself to Twitter. Yet I’ve never fallen in love… What am I doing wrong?
Are you a Twitterer? If so, I’d love to hear your tips and what you love about the platform!