Twitter progress

This Twitter thing is still a bit of a mystery to me.  In the last week I have some 70 additional followers. 

Does anyone out there use Twitter very much or have observations about it?

What applications does it have?

I was looking for a way to let people know in a timely manner when there were new blog posts, etc, so I thought I would give it a try.

@fatherz

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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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20 Responses to Twitter progress

  1. Jenny Z says:

    Applications.. hmm, I dunno. I’ve been using it for a couple of different things. First and foremost, it keeps me connected with friends I might otherwise not talk to on a daily basis (friends from back home, many miles away)… second, it keeps me up to date on news, as I follow quite a few media folks. Third, it’s good for keeping up with blogs, though I don’t need that one as much, since I use Google Reader to read RSS feeds.

    It’s a bit like MySpace though. Some folks will “follow” you only because they want you to follow them. I got quite a few followers from @hughhewitt because of that.

  2. BarbaraKB says:

    Twitter is a human feed of information with conversations about this information, Father. Yet, there are many ways to use Twitter. For example, many bloggers, like yourself, use http://twitterfeed.com to post blog feeds to Twitter. I would be happy to help further esp. in regards to engagement @ Twitter.

  3. BarbaraKB: And how would you do that?

  4. BarbaraKB says:

    Well, you can follow me @ Twitter, either in my marketing & personal stream: @BarbaraKB or my Catholic stream: @CatholicMeme. One way to understand Twitter is to engage more: send @ replies and DMs (direct messages to follows) so that you may continue the conversation @ Twitter. Is this helpful?

  5. Not so much. Effective this means: use it and you will get it.

  6. BarbaraKB says:

    Exactly. Similar to your early blogging days. ;-) Perhaps this article from ProBlogger will help? http://is.gd/15Ne Peace.

  7. Astorg says:

    Just use it for short messages that give your followers a feel of what you are up to. That is its original and, in my view, most appropriate use.

    It can make sense to aggregate your Twitter posts on your blog home page, so readers can get a little history of your most recent doings. That is what I have doen on my own site.

    Hope this helps.

  8. I syndicate my Facebook status to Twitter with http://twitterfeed.com/. The only real purpose of my Twitter feed is to let people who use Twitter read my Facebook status through that instead of an RSS feed, which is how I subscribe to my friends status’ on Facebook.

  9. Jason says:

    The ‘classic’ definition of twitter is for conversations with friends/people you’ve connected with, or as a way to let the world know what you’re doing.

    Personally, if you were to turn your twitter account into a pure syndication stream (which is easy to do), I’d probably stop following you, since you’re already ‘syndicated’ to me via your RSS feed into my google-reader.

    However, if you use twitter as kind of a ‘here’s what I’m doing’, then it’d probably be fun to keep following.

    –Jason

  10. Barbara: There is a Latin phrase: Fabricando fabri fimus.

  11. Rellis says:

    Twitterfeed is a great way to syndicate your blog content. All you need to do is put the RSS of wdtprs in there. Every time you update the page, it will send a tweet to all your followers with a TinyURL link to the new post. It’s great.

  12. BarbaraKB says:

    {chuckle} Yes, Father. But *lots* of work with few laborers on Twitter. Come join further!

  13. Eric says:

    Father,

    As you know, I’m a tweeter. It is the next wave of web 2.0 where people are also able to contribute to content rather than simply read it. The greatest function I’ve been able to find is #hashtags which I am still learning about. I would advise anyone wanting to stay relevant in new media to get on board with Twitter.

    Follow me @ericwilson

  14. Peter says:

    #hashtags are a freeform way of organizing and grouping tweets on a particular subject. You could have a hashtag of #latin and anyone could search on #latin and find your (and others’) tweets on that subject. You create a hashtag by simply putting a hash in front of some word or term. They highlight one of the issues with microblogging – even more oceans of data making it harder to find what you want.

  15. Mark M says:

    I too use twitter, Father (markadm).

    I used to syndicate my blog to Twitter, and then use the Twitter application on Facebook to make that update my status. Quite nifty.

  16. W. Joseph Schrift says:

    I follow you on Twitter, Father. I tend to use it as a way to update my friends on what I’m doing, since we go to different universities. I have it set up so I get mobile updates – in that respect, it’s like sending a public text message to multiple people, but it’s easier to have a conversation and share links because it’s tethered to the Internet.

    I know Twitter is popular with politicians and organizations that have a group of defined followers who will become Twitter “followers”. This sort of application is good for updating that base on relevant or interesting activities (something more substantial, I suppose, than my kind of updates, which are usually “what I am eating right now” or “how I feel about final exams”). So far, I’ve been interested to see what you are up to on Twitter, Father. I think it can find a useful niche in your online activity.

  17. joeolson14 says:

    I agree with pretty much everything that people are saying but one of the awesome things about social networking/twitter like apps is being able to see into the life of. What I mean by that is it’s an awesome way to build rapport. I don’t care that you ate noodles with hot peanut sauce for lunch this afternoon, but i do like to see your blog posts on twitter. I do like to know what you are up to as well, so if it is eating, reading your brievary, saying mass, having a meeting etc. GREAT! I’m much more apt to forward your posts on if I know and like you. I already do from going to your masses occasionally when you are/were in town (St. Paul) or hearing/seeing you on Fox but not everyone is as fortunate as I, in that sense.

    However much some people disagree with me it would be so nice if the Church, which is always under constant criticism, would be a little bit more transparent. The more transparent the more people are willing to respect what the church is because they know it inside and out. Same things with Priests today. What is a Priest life like? Maybe more interesting, what is a Rogue Priests life like? ;) It’s nice to be able to relate with our clergy. So maybe next time we see each other we can trade secrets about Hot Chocolate or iphone apps…who cares? The thing is I get to know a little bit more about a priest I know and really like. Makes building a bond a whole bunch easier!

    Of course their are limits to everything but that is what I get out of twitter and why it has worked well for our business and my networking. My $.02.

    Thanks for you’re great work.

  18. Just saw this post from True Confessions of a Prodigal Daughter Blog:

    On Twitter Etiquette and Why I Think People Are Hooked On Twitter

    http://catholicprodigaldaughter.blogspot.com/2008/12/on-twitter-etiquette-and-why-i-think.html

  19. I have been on Twitter for over a year and it has been nice as more and more Catholics are using it.

    As for applications. I am currently using TweetDeck which runs on multiple operating systems and has a bunch of option.