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Twitter – why bother, chunters Private English Tutor

April 3, 2013
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Thoughts From The Corner

‘Shall I, shan’t I, Shall I, shan’t I?’ You know how it is. ‘Why not, what have I got to lose?’ This private tutor has joined the Twitterati.

After wondering about it for two years, considering it for two months, it took two minutes to sign up.

First came the web site Experienced Tutors (free for the first year), then this blog (free for now), now Twitter (free) – is there no end to this one-time computer-hating, backward-looking, victorian-literature-loving, stuck-in-the-mud traditionalist? Let me take you back 15 years or so.

I was slaving away over a hot pen, working my fingers to the proverbial bone in a college of further education in middle England. A single computer had mysteriously appeared in the staffroom of the dozen or so staff that co-habited there. ‘Email’ became the buzz word that I blithely ignored as I stumbled from classroom to classroom with bundles of folders, files, handouts, videos and books about Austen, Brontes and Dickens. Several months later my traditional pigeon hole barely held a note. Cooing with dissatisfaction I found I was left out of the communication loop. Someone showed me how to access my emails and over 300 of the blighters appeared, as if by magic,  on the television screen. Absolutely astounded, I went home that evening a very depressed, over-worked and under-paid lecturer. Can I pinpoint my downfall to that very day?

So you see, to set up the afore-mentioned web site, to be here blogging and to have joined Twitter is quite an achievement – achievement ‘yes’, progress ‘I’m yet to be convinced’. A miracle is perhaps too much of an exaggeration – although I do a good trick with bread, fish, water and wine!

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So why join Twitter?

i.    It’s free

ii.   Everyone says ‘It’s good for you’

Not one for believing there is any such thing as a free meal in life, it’s ‘free’ in that I didn’t have to grovel to my bank manager but like all social media, it will cost me my time. With respect to number ii above, the jury is out on that because only time will tell.

A few days ago I was reading a snippet about HubSpot and how it grades your blog. The grading is free – are you sensing a theme here?. Input your blog address, it gives you a score and tells you where you could improve things in terms of ‘getting yourself out there’. The snippet I read said the average blog scores 45; mine scored 79. That seemed good to me so I read on to where it suggested my score could be improved – it advised joining Twitter. Ever one to try to improve grades (must be a professional hazard), I joined Twitter.

Wonderful, there I was with this fully-formed naked bird and not sure what to do with it. It reminded me of the discussion between the Art mistress and the History professor. They were discussing a talented student when the Art mistress reasoned that the student knew what he had but wasn’t quite sure what to do with it. . . so that was me with Twitter.

No tweets, no followers, no following and no knowledge of how it worked – a totally naked bird. However, slowly ascending the learning curve of this Brave New World I now consider myself a ‘Twit’ because I have six followers, the ‘ter’ will come with time.

Those of you wishing to join me on Experienced Tutors flight ET0001 to Technological Enlightenment please click to follow on the right hand side of this page. I promise I won’t take much of your time because this private tutor has a proven track record of slow technological advancement and won’t be manically banging away at the Twitter button for some time yet.

twitter fail image

twitter fail image (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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From → Writing

24 Comments
  1. Billie permalink

    I’m now follower #8 🙂 I understand, it took me ages to get onto Twitter also. I just found it such a useless tool. Perhaps it’s OK for news-related stories and posting blog and website updates but I fail to see it’s attraction. Being of the talkative kind, 160 characters is way too short for me to say what I mean :D)

    • I may be like you in a few months – no, not the chatty kind but the kind that finds Twitter a waste of time. I’m wanting to get my novel published some time down the line so I’m thinking of getting a load of twits around me that help with that.

      • Billie permalink

        Ah yeah for that reason it’s an OK tool, short bursts of advertisement and seeing how many do actually use Twitter, I keep it alive myself, just to post new blog posts on there because a good few do follow it and are redirected to WordPress. I just find it too limiting really to be a total tweet-mad twitterado. I therefore twit a tweet too little perhaps :).

  2. You’re way ahead of me. I’ve signed up but don’t even know my address. I confess, until a friend enlightened me I thought you could only tweet from a mobile phone.

  3. I’m still holding out on twitter! Next, will you set up Experienced Tutors Facebook page?

  4. I joined twitter this weekend too. Great minds eh?…

  5. I hope that naked bird treats you well! I will get onto following you…

  6. I tried to resist twitter for a while until people pointed out that it would help promote my books. I haven’t really figured out the quirks to it. I just figured out what re-tweeting was this week. Personally, the 140 character limit drives me up the wall.

  7. lol! I felt the same way when I joined Twitter (and, to some extent, I still feel lost). Just followed you. Now, I’m off to Google “Hubspot.”

  8. I’ve been thinking about Twitter (on and off) for a long time. Perhaps I should hop over there and follow you …

    • Well, it is free. . . although it is another ‘time thief’. Not sure what it’s all about yet so I guess if you did join and we followed each other it would be like the blind leading the blind 🙂

  9. Think of Twitter as a micro blog; just a titchy version of WordPress. Say what you have to say in 140 characters. Allegedly publishers like a new author to have a “web presence”. But with all that tweeting and and blogging where’s the time to write your novel?

  10. I signed up for twitter a while ago, but haven’t tweeted much. I’m adding you to my ‘follows’ to see if that gets me off the ground. No pressure!

  11. Thank you. As you wrote your comment I’m putting together my post for this Wednesday – all to do with ‘schedules’. So i’m used to pressure. . . 🙂

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