Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Does it make you a Twit?

Well I have looked into the Twitter thing ... never like to critique something until I have experienced it first hand ... and I would have to say I think it has a short use-by date. Surely people will realise, fairly soon, that faffing around with this kind of shite all day distracts you from actually achieving anything.

I am not going to sugar coat it. I have canvassed a few busy women in different age groups. They agree the arrival of such a 'phenomenon' is troubling. Concentrated thought, real learning, achievement and even, dare I say, relaxation cannot be achieved with this constant disruption. People bang on about "turning off " the chatter in their heads. Then they turn to this kind nebulous chatter come twitter on their laptops. Madness, I say! And I don't care if it makes me unpopular or middle aged. This is one of those things where I think I will be proved right.

It’s funny how things come onto your radar at around the same time. The week or so ago when I signed up for Twitter was also when I heard a repeat of a radio interview between Margaret Throsby on ABC Classic FM (I know … elderly) and the novelist known to most as John Le Carre whose real name is David Cornwell. He worked for MI5 and MI6 in the 1950s and 1960s, before leaving the secret service to devote himself to writing after the success of The Spy Who Came In from the Cold (you may also know his book The Constant Gardener). This was one of those men whose knowledge is so sweeping, whose tastes so varied and references so learned and fascinating that you wonder just how and when they are able to be exposed to so much information – politics, music, literature, psychology – and, more astoundingly, retain it.

Will men (and women) such as this ever come again when the temptations of twitter and twat abound? I suppose I lack this kind of intelligence and education (and memory) and admire it too much. Perhaps that is why I am made nervous by the new, seemingly tedious, media mediums.

Certainly Twitter seems to be handy for marketing and everyone from Ellen to Kerri-Anne Kennerly is on to it. That should tell you something people. This is yet another selling tool. Don't be sucked in. And, if Ashton Kutcher's Twitter is anything to go by, it is also for people with no command of the English language. Seems a shame to be encouraging them when, surely, a scarlet letter branded on their arses would do the trick. Of course a 17-year-old just told me that Shaquille Rashaun O'Neal's Twitter is hysterical. Naturally I must now check it out. See how the illness permeates and pervades.

And, of course, you can Twitter me at TheMrsUnderhill but ... not for long. The minute you sign up you get emails from people wanting to be your followers. Now I have as strong an ego as the next egotistical, spotlight seeking, attention starved Baby Jane of a woman and swoon at the idea of finally locking in a posse of disciples but this is too much. They all seem to want to - surprise surprise - sell me something or get me to vote for them. Hmmmm.

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