I am somewhat of a late stage early adopter. I avoided exploring Facebook and Twitter for months. I could not see myself creating an account on Facebook. I thought that “microblogging” (limit of 140 keystrokes) on Twitter about where I was and what I was doing was a bit self-indulgent.
When I got over this initial hesitation I found that there was real power to connect across the world and form relationships and community. On Facebook, I was able to find and connect with people that shared the same interests and commitments that I had. I was also able to locate and reconnect with people that I had not communicated with in years. Sometimes finding them was like playing Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.
Finding, and following people whose “tweets” are of interest (and having people find and follow me) enlarges the conversation. Whether it’s exposure to multiple points of view, or discovering others of like mind, the Twitter community is vibrant, verbal, and vital. It was exciting to see world events unfolding before me in the real-time comments appearing on my computer screen. I knew about the Turkish plane crash at Schipol, Natasha Richardson’s tragic accident, and updates from the SXSW conference well before those stories made it to the TV and radio news. Simple tools developed for Twitter allow me to discover and track new trends. That is just the beginning.
Facebook and Twitter are expanding and evolving at an exponential rate. New tools and uses for them are being developed on a daily basis. New possibilities are opening everyday. Facebook and Twitter have been used to connect people, promote and grow businesses, organize and promote charities, and facilitate co-working, among other things.
Don’t become a digital hermit. Jump in and join the fun. Follow @theupexperience on Twitter, and join the “fan page” on Facebook for The UP Experience. See what uses you can find for social media. Let me know what you have done.
posted by Chris Welsh
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