A few weeks ago was the anniversary of my seventh year tweeting. You can bet that is a sentence I never thought I’d write.
I'm seeing how this thing works.
— Jeff Turner (@jeffturner) March 11, 2007
I'm going to bed. Still not sure I "get" this.
— Jeff Turner (@jeffturner) March 20, 2007
Had lunch with a group of bloggers today, none of us get Twitter: http://tinyurl.com/ytycts
— Jeff Turner (@jeffturner) March 22, 2007
Ah, the good old days. I first wrote about my experiences with Twitter somewhere other than on Twitter on March 31, 2007. It was on ActiveRain in a post titled, “What Is Everyone Twittering About.” It wasn’t even called “tweeting” back then. This portion of the post makes me laugh:
“Twitter does not give me access to information older than 24 hours in my friends stream. These are just a few tidbits from the past 24 hours. Where is this going? I don’t know for sure. The point is, I don’t need to know for sure. It has already provided value and a way to connect with people and ideas I certainly would not have otherwise. Heck, CNN started streaming breaking news there, so who knows what’s coming next.”
It’s humorous to me because just a six months later, in another post about a now defunct site called SuckyStatups.com, I wrote the following:
“Twitter.com: SuckyStartups.com’s post, Why Twitter Sucks, is more of a rant, but it gets at some of what I have felt all along. I wrote about Twitter on March 31, 2007. I said at that time, “Can I guarantee you’ll get it? No. I’m not sure I do.” Here I am almost 6 months later and I still don’t get it. I know this throws me out of favor with all the cool geek kids, but it’s true. In fact, I don’t get it to the point that I’m not going to use it even more than I’m not using it now. I’m going to follow the advice I gave to NP Dodge Real Estate Agents and quit doing one thing that isn’t bringing a return on my investment (time) and do something else instead.
If that post isn’t funny enough for you, the comment stream might do the trick. Of course, less than a month later, I was back again. Why? Because a whole slew of people who were going to attend the NAR Annual Convention in 2007 began using it to communicate. I believe it was Dustin Luther who called me back. It suddenly had a purpose and group of people I was interested in speaking with. A year later I was conducting a “social media experiment” from the floor of the NAR Conference in 2008 that involved three other companies, two of which went out of business long ago. The lone survivor from that test was Tatango, an SMS marketing provider. And Twitter, of course.
It’s safe to say I have a fickle relationship with social media. I swore off Foursquare for a year a while ago. I came back though. And now I’m just enjoy using it, with no real objective except to let my friends know where I’m at. If you’re wondering, most days I’m at the same three places. Would I miss it if it were gone. Probably not. I dropped off of Path and likely won’t go back… too much looking at my phone. I liked it though. But I don’t miss it either, because everyone I was talking to there I still talk to elsewhere. I stopped posting to my Instagram account in December of 2012 to make some kind of statement that is loosely captured in my last photo there. I haven’t gone back because I don’t miss it
And that brings me to here. Seven years on Twitter, punctuated by just one month – October of 2007 – with no tweets. I could reminisce about the “old days” on Twitter that were dominated by longer conversations, the place where I got to know, from a distance, many people who are now some of my dearest friends. Instead I’m going to celebrate the one social media site that, despite my moments of doubt, I’ve never given up on. I think I’d miss it if it were gone.