Twitter, blogging and the use of social tools

This is a reworking of a post in Cloudworks on a Twitter vs Blogging debate, see:
http://cloudworks.ac.uk/index.php/cloud/view/2266.html

The way I use Twitter and Blogs both in authoring and reading modes varies over time depending on what I am working on; the time I give to the online world; my mood; the status of my social connections (face to face and online) and probably many other factors. Twitter currently helps me discoverer blog posts of interest; but blogs help me reflect; they both have their roles.

Further, the whole point of social software is that is use evolves socially. The technologies have particular affordances that lend themselves better to different types of interaction but I “believe” (ironically as a I am by background a systems engineer) that it is the social development of this use that takes precedence over the technical factors in determining which tools become dominant in terms of usage.

We use the tools that enable us to keep in contact with our existing social networks or discover or construct new networks. Now different people use the same tools for different and multiple purposes. This can generate levels of “noise” that some find intolerable. In attempts to mange the noise levels they may filter posts, constrain their networks or shift to alternative tools.

I don’t think this situation will converge to the dominant use of a single tool or even small set of tools for long periods of time. Twitter will have a finite life time.

I find the desire of humans to communicate and our inventiveness in ways of doing it over the millennia fascinating. Web 2.0 is a tiny blip in that. How much better a society we construct though if we do effectively communicate.

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