I can report to you today: the question has been definitively answered.
This morning I awoke to an email from my friend Paul, which read in part:
They had a piece on the news last night about Twitter, and having Twitter parties and I was mortified.Not to sound like a wet blanket but JC, give me a FN break.
[Editor's note: I advise you to watch that video on an empty stomach.]
I wrote back:
I think this is part of the normal cycle of anything new becoming popular: the local news story about ______ parties.Probably because old people vaguely remember having parties themed around the fads of their day, like ”hula-hoop parties”. This gives them a frame to understand new things.
The report follows the classic pattern: the lead anchor takes a dismissive tone, the younger reporter is in the know, and (go figure!) the wacky weatherman’s been tweeting for months!
The next phase - techie backlash - has already begun in some quarters, with blog posts complaining about Twitter being misused by all the new people, and how much better it was in the old days of…what, 2007?
If history is any guide, I would expect this to be followed by a proliferation of spam, more system outages, more attempts at Twitter-killing apps, a Google tweet search, Twitter SEO and full-time Twitter experts, a generally agreed-upon “authority” ranking (which will then be gamed by scammers with paid fake followers), news stories about the dangers of predators on Twitter, a “get rich quick with Twitter” late-night infomercial, and an annual Twitter convention with an embarrassingly stupid name.
And in the end, especially here in the U.S., we will use Twitter not despite its 140 character limit, but because of it. We will communicate in 140-character segments because that is all we have to give.
Or maybe I’m wrong, and a new art form will develop. I hope so.
But please, keep your lunch plans to yourself.