Talk, talk, talk

Twitter mailase has set in big time. Twitter is dying! No, it's just beginning!

I'm not sure I can really explain my own confusion or mixed feelings. The power in any network is in how it allows you to connect with people. Part of the reason I've started to migrate away from Facebook is because of the backend filtering of which posts you see based on "engagement." I have no control over that filtering, and it doesn't sit well with me that I can't change the way it works.

Twitter, on the other hand, shows everything. I can choose what to work with and what to ignore. I've gone through the stages, but now I'm trying to figure out what's next.

Deep discussions happen. Off-the-cuff questions are answered rapidly. But I'm feeling a lack of connection. I feel a lack of purpose. I'm afraid that Twitter is become one of two things: A) A place teachers go because Twitter. B) A place where people talk all the time but don't do anything different. Ideas stop when they hit your eyeballs. But, you can justify the time as "idea-searching."

Maybe I'm following the wrong people, but it seems like a lot is put out by the bigfolk. I want to see new people, but how do we discover the new thinkers and leaders? I feel like there's a lot of echo without much growth. And if that's the case, it may be time to move on.

But where do we go?

9 thoughts on “Talk, talk, talk

  1. Doug Ragan says:

    I know where I am going! Pittsburgh, PA; Toronto, CAN; Saugatuck, MI; and Allendale, MI. I am attending 4 conferences this summer. Even then, many movers and shakers. For me, its a matter of knowing what you what and focusing on that! After my final evaluation my room for improvement is to improve my communication with parents. So could be class website, newsletter, combo of both. Don’t know yet, but that will allow me to move from a talk, talk, talk attitude to a do it attitude. I hope you find your focus! I found mine and it wasn’t from twitter.

  2. Brad Wilson says:

    I have been having very similar thoughts & feelings. The ‘talk with no action’ is what annoys me more than anything…but I suppose that’s not unique to twitter. So I try to hold myself to the standard of DO SOMETHING. Sometimes to a fault.

    In regards to “it seems like a lot is put out by the bigfolk” I realized the other day that I need to go through and prune who I am following.. and the first to go? Big names who only promote their own stuff or the stuff of those in their Tribr. Tribr, in my opinion, is the biggest echo chamber culprit in the edtech/edublogger circles.

    Thanks for the post!

  3. Jeff Utecht says:

    I’m finding new people in G+ communities and from there following them back on Twitter. The G+ communities have some amazing discussions going on. Find the right community and the people will follow. That’s what has been working for me lately.

  4. Mike (@mikevigilant) says:

    I’ve been frustrated with a lot of the big discussions on Twitter which appear to be rehashes of topics that have previously been covered at length.

    I whined about it for a while, but nothing changed, so I got smart and simply don’t participate in discussions on topics that do not interest me. If the topic’s good, I’ll jump in, but if not I no longer feel obligated to sit through it. I guess I should have learned that years ago.

    I have had much more success by joining some of the smaller chats lately–more personal, usually better topics, and less posturing a.k.a. posting witty soundbites that don’t contribute much to the discussion but get tons of RT’s and followers.

    I’d love to do more on G+, which is free from the character constraints of Twitter but is still a social network based on short updates. I lurk on G+ often; it’s a much slower pace, but there are some good resources on there, as mentioned by Mr. Utecht below.

    • Brian Bennett says:

      You’re right on the mark with the chats…hell, I started one of them myself. But twitter is that echo chamber, and partially by design. If you’re not there to experience the discussion, it didn’t happen for you, hence the repeat discussions.

      I guess my next question is, “Can the important issues be ‘chatified’?” My favorite example of poking fun at the idea of chatting about everything is Will Chamberlain and his #chatchat hashtag. I think the edusphere on twitter has created a standard system that is blocking real growth and deep discussion.

  5. Ben says:

    I share your concerns, but haven’t exhibited the same type of Twitter malaise to the same degree. It could help that I don’t follow “the big folks”, and that I specifically target only those people that I have actual conversations with, and/or have a higher chance of actually seeing face to face on a regular basis.

    We really don’t have to go anywhere, just find new your new passions. We’re all meant to grow, and experience change in direction and purpose within our careers and personal lives. However, the beauty of Twitter is that you don’t have to do anything differently with your old followers. Just let them keep tweeting, and start following others that are more closely aligned to what interests you currently. Try to develop stronger connections with those around with, that you can physically get together with; I suspect that’s a huge issue with a lot of people feeling “disconnected” in social media.

    Oh, and go read Alone Together by Sherry Turkle……very fascinating read about social media’s impact on the human psyche, with a good helping of robotic companionship tossed in.

  6. Stacy Lovdahl says:

    This reminds me of a book from a few years ago about the differences between startups and the successful corporations that they (sometimes) evolve into. The people who thrive in the startup phase often don’t make it in the corporate phase. The skills needed are different. But, Twitter is self selected and maleable. Who started the #flipclass chat?

    • Interesting connecting between the startup vs corporate phase for a company. In that same thread, I also think it’s interesting that many startups today simply seek to get acquired by another company and avoid having to make that transition themselves. Our economy of ideas is changing, but I’m not sure it’s for the better.

      Funny you should ask about the #flipclass chat…I actually pushed to start that a couple years ago. I was at a point where I needed to share and get feedback on ideas, so we formalized it. Since having a baby and leaving teaching, I haven’t been nearly as involved as I used to be. Maybe I need to hop back in…

      • Stacy Lovdahl says:

        I was pretty sure you were in at the ground level with connecting teachers who were flipping their classrooms. (You were my entree into the #flipclass world. I remember being very nervous about actually tweeting back to you!)

        The current #flipclass chat (my favorite because of community) focuses on big picture topics, but also seems to have a pull toward supporting the newbies. I love the growth, but on the bell curve of adopters we’re in danger of leaving new people w/o the awesome experience of connection through twitter. You seem to be at an entirely different point and maybe it’s time for the next big thing in twitter chats & connectedness.

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