March 29, 2009

Give in to the hype. GIVE IN!

I've begun Twittering. Don't get excited; I'm tweeting about once a day. I still don't completely see the fun/purpose of this, but I don't want to be that annoying last guy who picks up on a trend, the final holdout anti-Twitter guy six months after it becomes the dominant form of human communication. You know, like this guy or this guy.

So I'm trying. I like changing the status on my Facebook profile with some regularity, but somehow that seems less annoying and/or unnecessary. Also, I'm not much of a text-messager; partly because I have a Flintstones-vintage cell phone, partly because I'm a stickler for punctuation and grammar, and texting can be painful for people like me. (I exaggerate only slightly.)

But that brings me to an interesting observation: Part of my wariness with Twitter is that 140-character communication is not at all conducive to proper spelling, punctuation, grammar, etc. The more power Twitter has, the less power my people have. Yet ironically, the instruction text on the Twitter site itself is well copyedited. Consistent use of the serial comma, the conscious decision to lowercase tweet, use of the phrase 140 characters or fewer, an overall clarity of style that bears the graceful fingerprints of a talented copy editor. It's not perfect—I just spotted a missing period and an em-dash snafu—but it's surprising for a resource that is completely based on noncopyedited text.

Sometimes, it takes so little to interest me. Trivia, folks.