The Downside of Twitter

The Downside of Twitter
Image: Google

I’ve talked at length about the benefits I’ve felt since taking up twittering: increased visibility, a widening of networking opportunities, marketability, etc., and I’ll continue to use the medium for all of those reasons, as well as the fact it’s fun.

But Twitter has downside and I’m not talking about neds pissing off the government by organising looting trips and car burning. I’m talking about the Twitter Rumour.

News spreads fast these days as people are enabled to communicate on a global scale from their handsets. News stories spread like wildfire, which in many cases can be beneficial and fruitful if you happen to get in on the act quickly enough.

Take Monday’s announcement that Arab Strap were to reform for one gig. Only those quickest off the mark got a ticket; if you missed it, you were out. The same things happens when big news stories breaks, like for example, when it was discovered the News of the World was being shut down—that spread like wildfire through the Australian Outback on a hot summer’s day!

But the negative can also happen, which doesn’t always work to the benefit of the Twitter community. Last night I noticed several tweets that legendary Scottish DJ, Tiger Tim Stevens MBE, had died. Twitter was alive with #RIP messages to the point that #TigerTim actually started trending in the UK. But with no actual news reports and Forth One hastily removing the story from their news website due to being unable to confirm it, a nasty rumour was suspected at being at the heart of all the speculation.

Tiger Tim, who had to retire through chronic MS and who hadn’t tweeted in over a year, was forced into making this announcement:

News spread I was dead. It was a cruel hoax & very upsetting for my mother (91) & family. I’m alive & well.

The speed at which rumours can swell up and then die down is astonishing, and when something like this happens you realise two things: 1) how easy it is to be sucked into a mass discussion, and 2) how small the world is through social media.

The power of Twitter is truly amazing, which brings me onto this…

The 3 Ebook Deal and Free Poetry
Scan this for 3 free ebooksDon’t forget to visit my revamped website at www.colingalbraith.co.uk and either sign up to the mailing list or ‘Like’ my Facebook page [www.tinyurl.com/colinonfacebook], as it will mean you’ll be entitled to a free copy of each of my next three novels. Alternatively, just scan the QR code to the right or text 3BOOKS to 88802 or go to the 3 Ebook Deal web page!

You’ll also find some great deals over at my poetry place http://www.chasstramash.com: all poetry ebooks are available for free download, 86p on the Kindle, and £3 (25% off!) for print copies.

3 Days Left at Trees for Life
Please check out the Trees for Life charity exhibition at Out of the Blue (The Blue Drill Hall) 32 – 36 Dalmeny Street, Leith. It’s free entry (10am-5pm) and finishes on 13th November. You’ll be able to see my framed haiku poetry, which is available for purchase with the money going to the Trees for Life foundation. Or you can just buy it direct from the website at http://treesforlifeexhibition.blogspot.com.

Peace and out!

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Enter coupon code EARLYSHOPPER305 at checkout ( EARLYSHOPPERUK305 if outside the UK) and receive a further 20% off your order of my poetry books and ebooks: FRINGE FANTASTIC, POOLSIDE POETRY and SILLY POEMS FOR WEE PEOPLE VOL.2. That’s over and above the 25% I’ve already knocked off!!!

Offer cannot be applied to previous orders and only applies to books or eBooks ordered through the Lulu option. Offer expires at 11:59 PM on 11th November, 2011.

Free ebooks for all readers at the new-look Colin Galbraith Official Website

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About Colin Galbraith

Author, poet, music lover, rabbit tamer, fake faller.
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2 Responses to The Downside of Twitter

  1. Yes, you are right, word spreads fast on twitter and that can be a good thing, but sometimes, as in the case you cited above, it can be upsetting and destructive. I guess we have to keep an open mind on news transmitted through the twitterverse. Is this a new site design by the way? Very nice… is that tea, coffee or hot chocolate?

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