Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All
Monday, November 23, 2009
No, I Won't Be Getting On Twitter
To the nice person who enjoys my futurological brickbats and occasional acerbic one-liners so much she wishes I would start tweeting, and stop with the sprawling "tl;dr" e-pistles, I must say thanks, very, but, you know, no thanks. I am in fact temperamentally incapable of tweeting in a sustained way -- if it makes any kind of sense to connect sustenance with tweeting in the first place. I am no more inclined to follow anybody on Twitter than I am stealthfully to stalk a brittle-boned dead-eyed scarcely post-pubescent celebrity into a public restroom in the hope of finding in their recently relinquished bowl a floating fragment of unflushed poo. I eagerly aver that Twitter is useful as a form of reportage in contexts where the contours and stakes of a process (like a mass protest or a legislative process) are changing very rapidly and unpredictably on the basis of scattered diverse stakeholder inputs. But Twitter is in my view an anti-thought anti-analysis anti-judgement medium more generally and actually destructive of these wherever it draws too much attention to itself. One cannot analyze, contextualize, or argue in a Tweet, but only testify to ill-digested sensations, observations, and prejudices. Twitter is where wit withers, it is a further brutalization of common sense and common cause and common wealth at the worst possible time in our collective and planetary life.