Date: Tuesday, August 16, 2011
I was a little surprised the other day when I went to our neighborhood tennis courts and I got a bunch of strange looks from people. I could tell they were whispering about me and in some cases even laughing at me!!
I finally asked someone what the problem was. “Well, sir…you’re trying to play tennis with a squash racquet and a baseball!” I didn’t really understand the problem. I was on a court; I had a racquet and a ball. So I stated the same.
Once the gentleman was finished laughing, he said, “Sure…you have a racquet, a ball, and are on a court, but you are using the wrong tools to play. Try a tennis racquet and a tennis ball for the tennis court, you’ll find it’s probably more effective.”
Sure enough…he was right.
That’s kind of how I feel when I see people using the court of social media to play Facebook with Twitter and vice versa.
Sure, you can use them both to do what you want, but you might be using the wrong tools to affect your purpose.
Twitter is by purist standards, a 140 character microblog service that allows you to say what you want, when you want, in a short little blast of information. Using an embedded link to another platform or photo or video adds some depth and richness to the little blog but people, for the most part, know what they’re getting. The simple nature of Twitter allows for rapid-fire posts that don’t inconvenience or bother anyone…because everyone is there for pretty much the same purpose. If people don’t like it, they simply un-follow or ignore you.
When you connect Twitter to post automatically to your Facebook page, then all those little blasts of information slam onto other people’s walls and bury information that they might actually want. And what about the people that have five accounts that all auto-populate each other through feeds? I just love going to my wall and seeing five of the exact same posts from the same person under different account names. Thank you very much…I just “un-liked” you.
Facebook is photos, videos, connections, games, and information and offers you so many more choices for sharing and privacy and places and on and on. On and on also includes much longer status updates: 420 characters for just a status update. So when you link Facebook to Twitter it just doesn’t fit the scope of the platform.
A link is created so that you can see the rest of the post and clicking on it will take you to the post…maybe. I have seen too many times to mention that when clicking the link, I am taken to Facebook, but I can’t figure out what it is I am supposed to be looking for because I am taken to a wall, sometimes my own wall. Also, if I’m not logged into Facebook, I have to complete that step first. But a big problem is that some people just aren’t on Facebook so the information of value isn’t going to get to them anyway.
Oh and before you tell me that you can program which information you actually want to go from one to the other, I know this can be done. But here is the problem. If I want to read you Facebook posts, I will do it on Facebook. If I want to see your tweets, I will do it on Twitter.
When I see a link with the letters http://fb…. I usually just ignore it, unless you have told me what the value of clicking the link actually is. If the first 100 characters I read on Twitter look like a status update followed by “…” and then the http://fb, I’m moving on without clicking.
Yes, I know that many people will be breathing fire as they read this and will tell me I’m wrong and may even take their time to plead their case about why I am wrong. Please do!! Remember, I used to be one of those people that thought cross populating was a good idea so I’m open to change and others opinions.
If you think I’m right, let me know…I would love to hear your thoughts on it as well. Maybe you have thoughts on it that I haven’t covered here and want to let everyone know.
Don’t play tennis with a baseball…and don’t get me started on using Twitter with your LinkedIn account!!