Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Tales from Tweet Camp

I believe that Kirk Biglione may well be the Bob Ross of Twitter.* Not only does he have a soothing voice and easy-to-follow style that would make him perfectly suited to Scott Brick’s Share the Experience audiobook contest, but in just an hour’s worth of sessions (spread conveniently over five days) he manages to explain the ins and outs of the Twitter experience in a way that even the newest online member could follow. A good thing, too, because before participating in the beta version Booksquare University’s Tweet camp the only thing I knew about Twitter was that it had a character limit.

Oh, and that people who Twitter were not called twits (apparently some even actually find that insulting).

Broken out into short videos (averaging ten minutes), the BSU Tweet camp explains how to set up your Twitter account, the vocabulary of twitter (hashtags, retweets, and followers), and how to use your Twitter account to promote yourself. Each video, narrated by Kirk, is accompanied by various articles (often written by Booksquare herself, Kassia Krozser) with links to other helpful Twitter related sites. Despite the short length, the videos do everything but tell you when to breathe and the articles follow-up and enlarge upon the concepts related in the videos.

After completing the course, you should be a perfectly proficient tweeter, capable of following conversations and enticing followers of your own. Use it to promote you next book, your website or your business. Use it just to join the conversation. Hell, you’ll use it just to follow the conversation (although that has gotten easier now that Twitter has hyperlinked the hashtags—try #sbtd #sbtd#amazonfail).

Additionally, upon completion, you might learn that tweeting is not your thing; something that I think is just as important. It was after BSU Tweet camp I realized something that has been plaguing me for a long time—I’ve been suffering from computer fatigue. I get home from work and I don’t want to type. I don’t spend as much time on the computer as I used to, and when I am on, it’s usually to read a book. This fatigue transfers to Twitter as well, despite its short character requirements, which is not surprising as I also don’t text. I’m following some very interesting people, and I’ve definitely used my page to follow lit flair ups (Alice Hoffman et al), but beyond posting a few links I don’t have much to add at the moment. That may change now that I’ve started my Sony adventure as part of the Smart Bitches Sony test drive #sbtd

*I believe this to be a compliment, by the way, as I have very pleasant memories from my childhood of Bob teaching me to paint happy little trees.


BookClover said...

...the vocabulary of Twitter...gosh...I just hope that won't make it to the dictionary: I do agree with 'updating the language' and all that but I think it's getting a little too much...and we risk loosing grammar...

Borah said...

For me, computer fatigue is a summer-thing.
It's almost a shame: I spent all winter building up a twitter-community and an audience for my blog, and in summer I just abandon them all to enjoy the sunshine.

Your blog is the first one I've read in weeks - I got here because of the article you wrote about horror in February 2007, and think you write some interesting stuff.


Bookseller Chick said...

Hi BookClover, I don't think that Twitter will cause us to lose grammar and the ability to spell as much as texting will. I actually had someone use text language in a business email the other day and I could not contain my horror.

After I figured out what they were trying to say.

Borah, thanks for stopping by the blog. I'm trying to think of this horror post, but I'm a full brain cells short of a full thought at the moment and it is escaping me. I'm glad you find it interesting though. It sounds like you need an iPhone or a mini computer so you can twitter while outside and not lose your followers. Of course, I know for a fact I can post and email from my front porch swing, but that doesn't mean I actually do it.