The Twitter Account

My buddy Taylor (Here's his blog: link) got me to sign up for Twitter account a little more than a year ago.  It sat and sat and sat.  I started using Facebook and wondered what the point of twitter actually was.  So it sat some more.  I literally never used it.  Not even a single tweet.

A few days ago I got to chapter four of The Age of the Infovore: Succeeding in the Information Economy (link) in which the author, Tyler Cohen (Here's his blog: link), goes into detail on all the different types of communication available in this era and the how each one is distinct.  And I think I agree.  Email is completely different than texting which is completely different than a phone call.  Each has a very difference emotional impact and each can be more or less useful depending on the content and intent of the message.  Facebook and Twitter both have their own communication uses, as do blogs and face-to-face contact.

So my Twitter experiment begins.  You can see I added my twitter posts to this blog (See right).  I have exactly one follower (Taylor did have me set-up the account), so I'm not exactly setting the world on fire with my messages.  Which is alright.  I'd love to think a cluster of people I know and like will begin using it.  But even if they don't, I have to say I'm already enjoying getting tweets from people (mostly my favorite bloggers) that I'm now following in my twitter feed.

If I'm still using Twitter next year, then something about this worked.  Consider yourself invited to come along for the ride (link).

My Current Facebook Resolution

I created this site in response to my sincere annoyance at the owners of Facebook and their willful disregard for their users.  Several of my posts criticize Facebook and link to criticisms of their policy changes.  I stand by those posts.  It's all true.  The people who run Facebook SUCK.

They also have the most useful social media tool going today.  I admit that I hoped they would be taken down by their mistakes.  It isn't going to happen.  They hit the scale needed to keep growing and growing and displacing the other social media pages.  Let me put it this way.  Your parents bothered to set up Facebook profiles and some of them are actively using it.  Your parents are not moving away from this.  Neither is every other commercial entity that actively markets their own Facebook page.  Facebook won (for now).  Facebook is what the cable company was before the satellite providers.

So...  How do I reconcile my complete disdain for the owners with the overall usefulness of their services?  The key is this blog.  I'm going to make a new Facebook ID.  I'm going to make it completely public.  There is no way I can be surprised by changes in privacy policy when I've given up all pretense of having any privacy.  Then I'm going to completely minimize what I put into Facebook.  I figure they own anything I put into their system.  So what if I just post to my blog and... then use Facebook to link to my blog?  Now they can own the link but I control my content.  If I want to post photos, well, I'm NOT going to do it on Facebook.  I'll link to any number of the other sites that hosts pictures (Flickr, Picasa, Shutterfly, etc.).  Why should I give it to Facebook?  I know I can't trust them.  So I'll just give them the links.  To stuff I control.

To sum up, (1) Assume no privacy (2) Keep control of my material.  I get the benefits of the friend lists and the friend feed and the voyeuristic view of the people I used to know.  I keep the fun stuff.  And give Facebook as little as possible.

Will this work?  I can't say for sure.  It's worth a shot.  And I'll continually re-assess my stand.  I don't like these guys.  But there are plenty of business with services I use whose business practices I don't particularly care for (Think Comcast).  Upon reflection I believe I can make this relationship work.