One little tweety bird sitting on an e-fence…….
Two weeks ago, I seriously pursued using twitter, but immediately felt just like the little bird in the cartoon above. I did so want to be part of the action now, immediately!! There were so many interesting conversations going on and at best I could just “listen” or watch the action.
……….Reflecting back to Sept 2007
Sitting at the staffroom desktop, I could hear Jess laughing away at her desk. Upon enquiring about the reason for her mirth, I discovered that it was the result of a comment on twitter. Not wanting to be left behind, I immediately registered a twitter account and followed 2 other people. Over three months I added 5 tweets and thought it was rather a waste of time.
………Forward to the present day
In my school holidays, I looked more closely at a discussion started by lizbdavis in classroom2.0 where so much enthausiasm was displayed for this web 2.0 telegraphy. Finding some usernames there, I entered them into the ‘find folks’ window of twitter.
Once in, I could see that short conversations of 140 characters were in progress. There were blog sites, various web 2.0 software evaluations and replies to requests for assistance. Often friendly banter took place. Initally, I followed 25 people. Some, I found by clicking on someone’s avatar and looking at who they were following. It was then possible to look at their followings etc. I was selective as I wanted an edtech twitter group not just a general public one.
However, only a few followed me, so I felt like that lone little tweety bird. A teacher Kate, from Wisconsin, USA, started at the same time. At least we could converse with each other but both wished for interaction with the others.
Fortunately one of my chosen ‘following’ Sue, is a very caring, sharing experienced tweeter and blogger at emerging technologies in TAFE in Perth. She emailed me a list of 10 people who would be good to follow and would follow me back in return. These were such valuable contacts. From there I actively pursued an edtech group.
Now, I have 89 people whom I follow and 61 people who follow me. This is a comfortable number at the moment. Twitter has a had an enormous impact on my social and professional network. My twitter friends now come from Australia, NZ, USA, Singapore, Israel , England, Bangkok etc So, come tweet with us, you wont be on the fence for long, if you wish to seriously participate.!!
10 Tips for newcomers
· Find someone who might be able to jumpstart you with a few good people to follow.
· Look on your favourite blog sites to see if a twitter username or icon is given.
· Do not expect to part of the fold immediately.
· Watch and listen so that you get an idea of the proceedings
· Join the conversation when you can with a prompt or a reply.
· Explore the site thoroughly. Click on avatars and wander around.
· Remember that the most popular tweeters may not be interested in following more people. However it is still useful to read their conversations.
· Find a level you are comfortable with and move on when ready.
· Once comfortable, be pro-active in seeking more to follow.
· Take care as it can be extremely addictive!!
Some great tips at 10 easy steps for twitter beginners.