Twitter Invasion

Our blog, at large, is filled with posts about social media/blogging as a form of public address. Some advocate for it, others against it. Either way, it exists. Social networking (myspace, facebook, twitter) and blogging are here and invading. Every facet of our lives are being taken over by social networking – relationships, consumerism, education and healthcare. It is now possible to exist as someone completely different via technology. Although this can be beneficial in many ways, in others does it go too far?

I think in the instance of Twitter, this might be the case. Through twitter, an individual’s life becomes one large situation of exigency. It is a constant form of “life-updates”. Every situation is given exigency by Twitter. Where ever, when ever, you can tweet to the public. Your ‘Followers’ are your audience and the constraints you face are endless.  There is no ethos – besides the fact that you are the one living your life, so when tweeting about it, you are the expert. However, in most cases there is plenty of pathos to go around. Although your audience may be huge, is tweeting really about the audience? Or, rather is it solely to benefit the speaker?

 

Carly Huber

Advertisements

12 comments so far

  1. sarahtheobald on

    I agree with your comment Carly on the lack of ethos in modern technological forms of public address. I know that Wikipedia also gets a lot of flack about this same issue. While we are able to post to an audience of millions, it says little about our credibility if we have no qualifications to back up our claims. Anyone can post and edit on these new forms of modern communication and instantly reach the American public but it is still necessary to do independent research.
    While posting emotion driven, location driven, or observation driven tweets may be a little different than using Wikipedia as a legitimate source, I think they both bring up similar issues in the uses of technology in public address and communication.
    ~ Sarah Theobald

  2. heeryp on

    Yes I agree with Carly and Sarah on the issue of ethos on twitter. Twitter has taken blogging to a whole new level and probably a little too far in many cases. I have a twitter account in order to see what some of my favorite sports writers and analysts have to say about certain games or happenings. In addition, I follow a couple of athletes who actually post semi-interesting tweets. If the tweeter actually has an opinion that is backed up by fact or assumption, then the tweet can be useful and interesting to the audience. However, there are not many tweets that actually contain material like that.
    For instance, when an athlete like Kevin Durant (he is the reigning scoring champion in the NBA) posts something about how the team didn’t move the ball well enough and he didn’t play on the ball defense well enough and that’s why he believes they lost that night; then it is a useful tweet. This is because he shares his opinion about his team’s game that night(which is credible considering he is a very good player), it provides the audience with some insight that they may not already know from watching the game or seeing highlights. On the other hand, when an athlete tweets that he is “taking a nap” or (as former Steelers and current Jets WR tweeted) “wake and bake”, it demonstrates how tweeters can abuse the concept of twitter. I think that one of twitter’s main goals originally was to give people the opportunity to blog anywhere, anytime about things they saw or thought about. I’m not sure its purpose was to give people a chance to update their followers about everything they did that day.

  3. heeryp on

    Yes I agree with Carly and Sarah on the issue of ethos on twitter. Twitter has taken blogging to a whole new level and probably a little too far in many cases. I have a twitter account in order to see what some of my favorite sports writers and analysts have to say about certain games or happenings. In addition, I follow a couple of athletes who actually post semi-interesting tweets. If the tweeter actually has an opinion that is backed up by fact or assumption, then the tweet can be useful and interesting to the audience. However, there are not many tweets that actually contain material like that.
    For instance, when an athlete like Kevin Durant (he is the reigning scoring champion in the NBA) posts something about how the team didn’t move the ball well enough and he didn’t play on the ball defense well enough and that’s why he believes they lost that night; then it is a useful tweet. This is because he shares his opinion about his team’s game that night(which is credible considering he is a very good player), it provides the audience with some insight that they may not already know from watching the game or seeing highlights. On the other hand, when an athlete tweets that he is “taking a nap” or (as former Steelers and current Jets WR tweeted) “wake and bake”, it demonstrates how tweeters can abuse the concept of twitter. I think that one of twitter’s main goals originally was to give people the opportunity to blog anywhere, anytime about things they saw or thought about. I’m not sure its purpose was to give people a chance to update their followers about everything they did that day.

    Pat Heery

  4. dupublicaddress on

    Twitter is literally a stream of consciousness blog. You can post whatever you are thinking, as long as it is within the 150 character limit. You need no reason to tell the world what is on your mind. You just do it.
    It kind of reminds me of a kid holding a microphone for the first time at a christmas pageant. All of a sudden you realize, “WOW I have this whole room of people looking at me and my voice is really loud and WOW they’re all listening! Well I better keep talking!” and so the little kid babbles on about the one time they went to their grandma’s farm…well, at least I did.
    Twitter creates a forum for a bunch of kids with a microphone. Just because you have an audience doesn’t mean you have to address them. If you go to Wal-Mart to get some groceries, cool, thanks for letting me know. But when you post song lyrics that have like, thirty ambiguous interpretations and meanings, then what the heck are you saying!? You are literally BEGGING me to ask you about your life! You wouldn’t walk up to one of your friends on the street and say “I wanna hold ’em like they do in Texas plays” and then walk away!
    To conclude…I think that Twitter is a form of address for which there is always an audience, but there is no need to speak.

    ~Molly Coyne

    • carospence on

      That is a really good question. I think twitter is definitely more about the speaker than the audience. However, the speaker is always aware of the audience and constantly constructing what he or she says based on what the audience would find acceptable, amusing, impressive, or cool so that the person tweeting can in turn feel good about his or herself. In this way, the speaker is manipulating the audience for his or her own ego. People want to be appealing to have followers. Thus, people tweet things that will attract followers. It is a strange balance and there is definitely both ethos and ego present but overall I would say that the people tweet are far more invested in their own tweets than their followers ever will be.

      Caroline Spence

  5. flynnquisition on

    I agree with all the issues stated above with Twitter and its capacity for utter nonsense. Unless you adjust the security measures on your profile, anyone can tune on in to whatever it is you decide is important enough to tweet about. And whoever Follows you is doing it because they want to hear whatever it is you’re saying, so you are the expert.
    Semi-relatedly, the entire point of Twitter was the character limit; the idea was to keep it short and sweet so people could stay updated on the little things in your life (if you really feel so inclined as to let the entire Internet know when you are and are not ordering a pizza). However, many Twitter users will post several tweets rapid-fire, which clogs up the entire idea of Twitter in the first place. I guess in the end, people just really like talking about themselves to anyone who will listen.

  6. lewingj on

    I think aside from the concerns about ethos, which are valid, it also becomes a problem of saturating the world with public address. If you are constantly tweeting about every facet of your life, the things you have to say become less and less meaningful. Oftentimes the power of rhetoric is lost when it is such a common display. I know in the initial days of the Obama administration I started to become disillusioned because it seemed the president was making a speech or appearance every week. It didn’t matter what he was saying, the words carried less meaning to me. Might be just me but I believed that the president expressing a message was a special occurrence, and here he was showing up on TV all the time. I think twitter and even facebook work the same way. If i am hearing from you or about you constantly, your words lose power before they are even out because I know who is talking and that I will likely hear from you again soon. It makes it difficult for your message to stand out when it is lost amid the thousands of others you have said.

    Jake Lewing

  7. bfell on

    I agree with your stance on how Twitter is ineffective in its use as a “life-updater” however I think that you fail to understand that Twitter is a network with unlimited facets, many of which can be very effective in addressing and appealing to the public. There are many Fortune 500 companies that use Twitter to advertise and there are even more charity groups who utilize Twitter’s vast array of tools in order to gain support for their respective cause. God Carly, don’t be so close-minded.

    Brendan Fell

  8. cjryan9 on

    I think an important thing worth noting about twitter, as well as facebook and myspace, are there serving as sort of a big brother in the professional world. Instead being something fun, and a way to stay in touch with friends, these social networks have put our lives on display to a certain extent. A couple years ago, I would never have thought twice about my pictures, what people were writing on my wall, and what I said on facebook. Now you constantly have to look over your shoulder and be careful that there is nothing compromising on your facebook page, because someone is always watching. With that said, I think overtime it is becoming less and less a form of rhetoric because people have to be so careful about what they post. And I agree with Brendan, its seems like carry is being a little close-minded.

  9. jswanson89 on

    Great point. I think technology has infiltrated our lives too much, particularly with smartphones. I get email updates, facebook updates, and twitter updates all on my phone. It is great that it is so easy for me to have easy access to important information, but the facebook and twitter updates are a little much. Sometimes I will be sitting in class and I will feel my phone buzzing. When I open up facebook after class I might see, “Best peanut butter and jelly sandwich ever.” and I think to myself, “Gee that’s great that you love peanut butter and jelly, but was it really worth interrupting my day for it? Same thing with Twitter. I like the idea, but sometimes the constant updates are a little much.

    -Jason Swanson

  10. dupublicaddress on

    While I agree that twitter create an issue with issues, I think the biggest problem is how it (and other social media outlets) have blurred the line between public and private. While Fortune 500 companies and charity groups often DO make use of twitter, treating it as an outlet for addressing their audiences in a professional manner, there are just as many crazy people out there using it to bash others, stir up drama, or present way more information about their lives than anyone really needs to know. Twitter, facebook, blogging…all of these things have made many forget what descretion and a private life mean. Ultimately, I believe this negatively affects their ability to actively speak for an issue they are trying to promote/resolve…i mean, think about it, would you take Kanye West seriously after all of the things he’s tweeted about?

    Lauren Waters


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: