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Interesting post, interesting comments. Yes, Twitter is flooded with commercial interests. I get followed by lots of bots and lots of sales teams. When I can be bothered, I block them; I only follow people I'm interested in and who have inspiring ideas - and that would include a lot of friends and family but on the whole I use Facebook for those connections and Twitter is more about connections with strangers, some of whom become friends. I don't quite understand the anxiety about Twitter, Facebook etc and their commercialisation. A number of my friends express it, but I don't think I share it. Yes, the Facebook news feed is sometimes just a flow of people advertising something - an upcoming art show, a link to something they found amusing on YouTube, a new blog post (and I use it myself to post notices about my own new blog posts!). But I think that's OK - it's through those little 'adverts' that I have learned about new artists, new ideas, discovered memes, and felt connected, not just with people I already know well but with a circle of people I know only lightly or even have never met. Can this sort of interaction be the foundation of anything meaningful? I think it can, even without the examples of the recent events in Egypt as indicators of how there are times when ANY kind of information-sharing is potent and necessary. I've heard people say that Facebook and twitter interactions are 'only' virtual and thus 'not real'. This often seems to be said be those who don't use these media. What I think is interesting is that these comments seem to evince a desire for FB and Twitter interactions not-to-be - as though saying they are not meaningful will make it so. The thing is, that these little exchanges can't be undone. Some of them don't matter (in the sense of having no material impact upon the affect, bodies or relations of those who read them); others can have surprising force. One artist, whom I had never met, wrote on Twitter that his cat was dying; on an impulse I sent him a message to sympathise. We have now met, and become good friends, although he lives in New York and I in Melbourne. In some ways this example is banal; in other ways, it's a reminder that actions can follow on from the least of moments, that 140 characters can form the basis of something... I can see no reason why politics, social change, legal debate or cultural opinion should be different. The mechanics of evoking change might be different (and more complex) than the mechanics of initiating friendship after the exchange of 2 tweets, but that doesn't mean that we shouldn't think them through and try to work with them, if we can...
Toggle Commented Mar 5, 2011 on From swords unto mindshares at I cite
Jodi, this looks great, congratulations! Can't wait to read it :)
Jodi, this is great - thank you for posting this. I had been totally put off the movie by the reviews; your thoughtfulness here means that I will be less quick to believe in the negative hype about the film....
Toggle Commented May 29, 2010 on Why I liked Sex and the City 2 at I cite
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May 29, 2010