Peter Whitehead’s piece in FT’s digital business made me chuckle this morning. As someone who has just joined Twitter, he seems to be going through the inevitable “what’s this for?” phase, soon to be followed by the obsession phase no doubt. Anyway, the reason his post made me smile particularly this bit:
First and foremost are contacts. A network quickly develops and you do feel vaguely “in touch” with people you are following. In the short time I’ve been Twittering, I have seen a few interesting ideas and some appeals for information and advice, which could reap rich rewards depending on who is following you.
There are also news services and blogs to follow, which are useful.
But it is not really a conversation; tweets are mostly one-way thoughts and observations, with little call for interaction.
As people remarked on twitter today, it might help his cause if he added his Twitter name to the piece (it is @peterwhitehead if you’re interested) 😉
I do agree with Peter’s sentiment about personal comments vs professional ones though – it is a tough balance but surely no more than other forms of communication?
My biggest concern, however, is over who I am on Twitter. Am I just me or am I representing the FT? Can I say outrageous things? Can I use it to promote Digital Business?
It is the world of Web 2.0 yet again blurring the boundaries between the professional and the personal. Unedited blogs, indiscretions posted on social networking sites, random thoughts given away to strangers on Twitter – one mistake and it could be the ruin of anyone.
I feel this is no more a risk than any other form of communication. This topic has also been discussed by Charles Arthur and Rory Cellan Jones amongst others…for what it is worth, my (somewhat lower profile) advice is:
###Don’t edit yourself, personality combined with the more serious stuff works well on Twitter
###People follow you because they like what you say, they will soon unfollow if they don’t
###Many journalists (and others) pimp their blog or site content, in fact Twitter seems, for many, to be taking over RSS as a way to keep up to date with fave sites
I for one look forward to seeing more come from the team at Digital Business so keep tweeting!