Saturday, 11 January 2014

Twitter ... the purest form of communication?

I used to mock twits like myself.  I didn't see the magnitude until now.  Once I started to want to see change ... want to be the change, I started to notice other peoples' words and their immensity.  There are some incredibly eloquent people out there who can arrange a group of words in such a way that you just get it. So I craved more and it seemed like a natural next step for me to test the waters of Twitter.

I dipped a single toe into the murkyness because at this point, I thought it was simply about dissing people and free advertising.  But it's so much more than that I now see.  The shock to that one toe made me shut it down. What was with all the pound symbols!  How the heck was I supposed to get the message with all of that sillyness?

Ah the #hashtag.  I like to see things in dogisms or horseisms so here goes:  in the canine world, a hashtag is like a fire hydrant, a fence post, or a well placed tree.  These are the places where dogs go to get what they're looking for.  Peeing on things and sniffing them is how dogs learn about their peers.  Such are hash tags.  When you hash tag a word, it makes it easy for others to find your message.  For instance, if you are interested in Canadian Politics, or if you want to get a message to anyone in that area of expertise, you would search or use the hashtag #cdnpoli.

My toe got acclimated with the water pretty quickly once I understood the hashtag, so I jumped in up to my waist and started following other twits.  Well, as you may have read in my other blogs, I am a tree-hugger who believes that all plants should be legalized.  The twittersphere is alive and overflowing with twits who live and love the culture that revolves around the #Cannabis plant.  Very quickly my twitter feed was overflowing with self-gratuitous tweets about getting high.  Since one of the changes I'm wanting is to show the world is the other side of that plant, I quickly realized that I had to look for informative virtual breadcrumbs elsewhere and purged.

So I've been up to my neck now for a few months.  At this moment, I have tweeted  close to 4000 tweets, I am following 2000 fellow twits, and I myself have 970 followers who like the bread crumbs I'm droppin'. There are millions of us on Twitter, some on more than one account.  But the creators of the Twittersphere limit the people you follow.  I sadly found myself on a Twitter-enforced "following time-out" earlier this week until I realized this fact.  So the last few days have seen me picking and choosing who I follow based on the quality of the message that those fellow twits are putting out there.  My interests are varied.  So this is a work in progress to say the least.

What I love about Twitter and why I ask if it could be the last pure form of communication, is because Twitter is about the message and not about who is speaking it.  I consider myself to be all-loving and all-accepting.  And yet when most of us hear someone say something that interests us, we immediately look up and make a judgement on the worth of their words and message based on how they look, what they wear, who they're with, and what they drive.  It takes place momentarily even when we don't know we're doing it. Yet on Twitter, you can't see those things. You can only see the words that the twit is putting out there-- sometimes words that evoke strong feelings in strangers.  That is profound to me.

A few years ago, I opened a fortune cookie that read, "Begin ... the rest will follow".  I started writing more seriously that day.  I was and still am @FinallyInspired.  I tweet articles, truths, quotes, and my own messages from my blog about equality, freedom, and truth.  I do this usually in my pj's on my couch.  I called myself 'the couch activist' once when a 'friend' accused me of not doing more about the shittyness in the world.  I have no formal training of any kind other than a ferocious hunger for truth and justice, and the ability to put words to a feeling in 140 characters or less.

The people in positions of authority in the world control the messages that media give us.  On Twitter, normal every day people just like me can share their viewpoints, their perspectives on life and all the issues therein. This is a good thing.  What one of us feels, others feel too.  We are all different;  and all so much alike.  If you want to expand your news source, if you want to learn something new, and if you want to evoke feelings in strangers I welcome you to join Twitter.

The waters are quite welcoming when you get a handle on the rules.