Twitter: Thumbs Up

Topic: The Value of Twitter

Jay Rosen: Well, I don’t think it’s necessarily it has value for everyone and I’m not one of these people who you should get on Twitter and everybody should have a Twitter account, no. I can tell you what's interesting about it for me is people can elect to follow writers and thinkers and speakers they’re interested in, and you can elect to follow them back or not. And so for me, it’s a great way to build a network of people who are interested in my work, friends of my ideas, so that’s what the people who follow me on Twitter are they’re friends of my ideas and I can talk to them through this network as they listen to me but also a lot of the other people at the same time, so I have a small part in their feed which is fine because I’m one of many voices they’re listening to. So that was Twitter is. It’s your own network of people who follow what you do and say.

Question: How do you use Twitter?

Jay Rosen: Well, I’m learning Twitter. In my first few months doing it and so I’m doing lots of things that just help me understand the form, and a lot of them probes, they’re just playing around, tinkering as it were with something new. But I used it the way other people do and that the people I follow are constantly posting links and ideas about stuff that I want to keep up with. When I find something that I think would interest the kind of people who read my blog or who follow my arguments, I post it. Hear something new. I post questions to my followers. I pushed out news of my work as it appears around the web, and I also get a kind of a real time reaction to things going out in the news that really interests me especially in the media biz and the whole realm of alternative media, new media. These are things that I follow with passion. And so, it’s keeping me in touch, it’s filtering the web for me. It’s reading the newspaper for me and it’s also a group of people who I trust with my ideas both in finished form and in the kind of tentative [groping] that you do when you try to figure out your reaction to things like the saddleback form where McCain and Obama appeared in last week. And so, it’s part of living in a world of information with really expert guides, that’s Twitter for me.

Recorded on: 08/19/2008

Jay Rosen talks about how Twitter provides him with a network of expert guides.

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