I’m amused by the blowback among the social media masses over this week’s Late Show with David Letterman. Dave admits to actor Kevin Spacey that he doesn’t use Twitter.
Spacey pulls out his BlackBerry and shows Dave just how easy Twitter is. Dave responds he “can’t afford it” and later, says it reminds him of “a waste of time.”
The Twittersphere burned up the next day with folks basically labeling Letterman a Luddite for dissing the Twitter world and choosing to avoid it.
However, I think it’s better that Dave avoid Twitter. We already have too many celebrities and other folks who don’t get Twitter clogging up the bandwidth.
Remember, Twitter is all about conversation. It’s the world’s largest water cooler. What you get out of the conversation depends on what you put into it. You follow, you get followed. You interact.
As a Twitter user, I try to follow those who follow me, figuring that I may someday learn something from them. And the conversations at times have been very interesting and enlightening.
Unfortunately, the conversation has been diluted by celebs who treat followers like a body count…the more you have, the higher your stature. Much of the glitterati on Twitter now treat the conversation one-year. They have many followers, but follow few. I’m sure psychologists can explain that people feel the need to follow a celeb on Twitter as a personal fan club or to live vicariously through their lives.
But are they really connected with them? I looked up a few key celebs on Twubble, and here are their stats as of July 22:
Oprah Winfrey: 16,846 following; follows 43
Ashton Kutcher: 2,901,305 following; follows 187
Kevin Spacey: 840,078 following, follows 4(I was very disappointed by this, considering Spacey acted like he got the concept when he was on Letterman.)
I can understand that it would be next to impossible to follow hundreds of thousands of folks, but these numbers show that for Twitter, their conversation is strictly one-way.
They have put the Twit in Twitter. They have cast a pall on Twitter’s potential to become a remarkable social networking and marketing portal.
(I must note that not all celebs are Twitter abusers. There are a few, like WLS-TV weatherman Jerry Taft, who understand it’s about the dialog and contribute to the conversation.)
So Dave, thanks for not getting on the Twitter. Kevin, if you’re serious about Twitter, start listening to those who follow you. Oprah and Ashton, thanks, but you can move on to the next fad now … maybe finding a life in the Twit competition below (Thanks to Monty Python’s John Cleese, who incidentally is on Twitter and does provide some wonderfully funny tweets)
The rest of us…we’ll forgive the interruption and get back to the conversation.