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Thing 27 Twitter

Page history last edited by Ann WS 15 years, 4 months ago

 Thing 27 Twitter

You've heard about this microblogging phenomenon, now take some time to try. You may just love it!



What is Twitter? At its most fundamental level, Twitter is just a place where people answer the question, "What are you doing now?" Every time you answer that question in 140 characters or less via the Twitter website, SMS, email, IM, or other Twitter client, it posts to your Twitter account. Posts are publicly viewable on the Twitter time line or can be made viewable just to friends or individuals.


Twitter gives you the chance to publish your thoughts quickly or to tune into the thoughts and information streams of other users from around the world. Twitter posts are ideal for making single points or sharing a single piece of information, like a link, instantly. Think of the difference between an email and an SMS message, rather than a blog. Twitter is a microblog.  Every time you post a new message, that message is relayed to all of the people in your friends list, published to your personal Twitter home page, and added to the public home page unless you tell it otherwise. Your tweets can also be posted to your blog, or other social networking sites to which you belong.  In addition, Twitter offers the ability to send direct messages to any of those you follow, or who follow you, without their being part of the public Twitter stream.



There is a lot out there about Twitter. Here are some introductions to what Twitter is and how to use it:


Still not convinced or don't quite get it? Try these:

Here's a shorter but comprehensive overview from All Things Digital.

The Big Juicy Twitter Guide 

How to do things with twitter


You can reply directly a specific post or message. The @ is a reply directed to a specific person or message sent by that person. 


What is the fail Whale?: 



Sometimes Twitter gets overloaded or has problems, in which case you'll see the Fail Whale.  They're usually pretty quick to fix things so don't get discouraged.


Other Twitter info you should look at: 


So to summarize, Twitter is a microblogging tool, an alerting system, a type of IM, a social network, a status updating tool like IM away messages, a conversation, and more. For librarians, it appears destined to be an essential conference tool as well as a personal productivity tool that can be used for creating to-do lists, tracking bug fixes, brainstorming with colleagues, and generally keeping in touch with friends.


The Best Tweets Include: 


  •     Recommended links.
  •     Images and videos to share.
  •     Something worth replying to and having a conversation over. ( see How to Use Replies above)
  •     Something worth retweeting. (Avoiding 1-sided conversations)
  •     Announcements about upcoming events.
  •     Valid sources of information.


                   Now it's time to Twitter.






1. Visit Twitter and sign up for a free account. Be sure to fill out your profile information so people will know something about you.  Include your blog address if you want to increase traffic to your blog.  Your name and username will be visible to Twitter users, but you can choose to keep your updates (tweets) private or put them on the public time line. Only approved friends will be able to see tweets for protected or private accounts. Since Twitter works best if you have a group of friends, colleagues, or family on Twitter with you, Twitter gives you the opportunity to invite friends to Twitter via email.


2. Try a few tweets. It's not as easy as it sounds to keep your messages to the short 140 character limit and still get your message across. Think of it as a challenge, like making a word with the letters you're given in Scrabble.


Make your Twitter page unique using some of these resources: 


Twitter explained for Librarians


Twitter in libraries


3. Check out these examples of how Twitter is used:  Hibbing Public Library (hibbinglibrary), School Library Journal (sljournal), Luria Library (lurialibrary). Check them out by finding them on Twitter!


Other Twitter uses found: 


4. Visit the More Things account at mnmorethings and follow it. Do you see other people that More Things is following?



5. Find some people to follow. Here are some possible ways to find them: 


6. Make a Twitter Badge and add it to your blog.

7. Try to Tweet at least once a day.  Invite others you know to Twitter.

8. Search Twitter for anything that interests you to explore how people use this tool. What conversations did you find?


 Blog Prompts


  1.  Blog about the experience and be sure to post your Twitter username there so others can see it and follow you.
  2.   Did you like micro-blogging? Do you love it, hate it or are you ambivalent? Explain.
  3.   How else could libraries use Twitter? How could you use Twitter?





For the Curious  (optional)


You can make a tweet plan


Schedule tweets: Future Tweets,Tweetlater,brightkit, Twuffer


Share pictures on Twitter: (you can also post them to your blog from Twitpic.)


Access Twitter through Gmail with TwitterGadget


How are people Twittering/most and least popular apps


Challenge:  Help them write "Twitter for Dummies"


Challenge: After you've been tweeting for a while,  Use your tweets and Twistory for reflection-- whenever you've

had a chaotic week, month, or trip: use Twistory to grasp what happened to you. 

How to find more Twitter apps:


If you find any other good ways to find them, please share that information with us in your blog.


Read and reflect on this article from Mashable.  What effect do you think Twitter will have on the blogging world?
Do you think Twitter will change your life? Elaborate.  Use Twitter for a while then revisit your expectations with your experience and tell us about it.





Comments (8)

Linda Wadman said

at 11:04 am on Mar 10, 2009

About Twitter and IM: http://news.cnet.com/8301-13846_3-10063991-62.html

You can get SMS from your phone if you set up the device, but IM is not coming back anytime soon.

Laura Miller said

at 10:06 pm on Feb 26, 2009

I went to the site http://www.ehow.com/how_2075922_use-twitter-instant-messaging.htm to learn how to post to Twitter via my IM account. I was able to view my settings in my Twitter account but I did not see any Phone & IM link where I could enter my Instant Messenger username. Is there something I'm missing here?

Elizabeth Anderson said

at 5:49 pm on Feb 22, 2009

Wow! so much information. Has anyone used TweetDeck? I now have a personal and library Twitter account.

Ruth Solie said

at 12:09 pm on Feb 17, 2009

Laura - if you go to http://www.ehow.com/how_2075922_use-twitter-instant-messaging.html you will find step-by-step instructions on how to post to Twitter from an AOL IM account. Hope this works for you. If not, do a Google search on Twitter AOL IM and you get lots of results that should help.

Laura Miller said

at 8:30 am on Feb 14, 2009

I'm trying to post to Twitter via my IM account but I am having problems. I use AOL IM.

Ruth Solie said

at 3:02 pm on Feb 3, 2009

click on the arrow (triangle) on the edit bar at the top of the page to enlarge the text box to fill the screen. The sidebar will disapper, and the text box will be larger. It is possible to click on the arrow again and reduce the text box/restore the sidebox when you want to see it again.

Shelf Elf said

at 10:54 am on Feb 3, 2009

Sorry I noticed the printable version button at the bottom and then when I clicked on it that is where all the information showed up.

Shelf Elf said

at 10:53 am on Feb 3, 2009

I have noticed that on a lot of the pages that the sentences are cut off so you can't read it very well.

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