Monday, April 21, 2008

The genius of Twitter

Read an absolutely brilliant blog post about Twitter this weekend: apparently Michael Arrington over at TechCrunch lost his Comcast internet service, so couldn't blog, email, surf...anything. So what's a guy to do? Call customer service - only they were feeding him empty promises. So he hops over to Twitter about his woes. And several bloggers picked those messages up and re-broadcast. "Within 20 minutes of my first Twitter message I got a call from a Comcast executive in Philadelphia...[who] said he monitors Twitter and blogs to get an understanding of what people are saying about Comcast."

The power of a distributed network...powered by Twitter, in this case at least.

I remember reading a ton about how useless Twitter was back when it first launched. How it was a service for the narcissistic and it just wasn't useful at all. This story is a first-hand recount of how valuable Twitter can be. I also know that my supervisor recently signed up for Twitter just to track his day-to-day dealings. We have both discovered that a To-Do list tracks what you want/should be doing, but Twitter enables you to track what you are doing. Sadly, those two things end up being mutually exclusive more often than not. Twitter can help to keep tabs on all that daily minutiae that chews up more time that we'd all care to admit.

This story should really serve two purposes:
  1. Serve as a wake up call to organizations that they should be keeping tabs on what people are saying about them via social media, including Twitter.
  2. Hopefully it can shake some sense into existing administration about the usage of these kinds of tools on the job.
Twitter can be exceptionally useful in the enterprise space, especially if you have employees who are in a telework environment and you're curious just what might be going on during their day. I try not to think of it so much as micro-management, but rather a digital way of looking into the office while on the way to the water-cooler.

Either way, Twitter is still gaining traction as a valuable tool and can play a positive role in your online space.

No comments: