Is the “tweet” literally altering the way we think?
The world seems to be falling in love with Twitter. It’s immediate, ubiquitous and, honestly, sort of feeds our egos.
Twitter and Facebook are really about two things: immediacy and platform. Anybody can very quickly share their thoughts or comment on the thoughts of others. It creates a sense of virtual community.
But Twitter only allows you 140 characters in which to say whatever it is you have to say. Facebook may afford you a bit more, but brevity is the key to getting read in either place.
That caused me (Don Hampton) to think: “Just how effective can you really be in communicating something of depth and value in 140 characters?”
“Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposi”
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are th”
I know what you’re thinking. Social media wasn’t designed for oration or to really even be a space where true discourse can take place.
But isn’t that the point?
Twitter has more than 360 million users and Facebook even more at last report. People are going there every day to interact, explore and discuss.
Combine that necessary brevity of speech with the fact that social media allows anyone to have an equal platform and you can see that we have created here a true marketplace of ideas that has very little moderation.
In other words, whereas we used to be a society where degrees, experience, expertise and skills were relevant to dialogue, we are rapidly moving in the direction that we don’t really need to listen to anything we don’t like – and every idea is just as valid as every other.
And, if I only have 140 characters with which to convince you, how convincing can I be?