Have I lost the ability to tweet?
Twitter is a huge part of my life. I won’t deny it – I’ll even admit that I might be slightly addicted to it. It’s been a way of expressing myself, has offered the largest method of me networking humanly possible in the theatre industry in a short amount of time, and has even landed me a relationship – not bad for just over a year’s worth of tweeting some several thousand tweets. But is my time up for the ‘micro-blogging’ site?
I feel somewhat at a loss when it comes to Twitter these days. A certain something has left the site and in return the same material is being churned out again and again. Have I exhausted all those that I should and do follow? The people now springing up on twitter are those who are trying to sell their Edinburgh shows, those catching up on the twitter band-wagon somewhat late and a whole lot of spam. No wonder I feel tired of it all.
The problem goes a lot deeper than those that are using Twitter now, it goes into theatre marketing, into the mundane “I’m doing this now” that I tweet each day, and into the lack of innovation. I am finding more than ever that I am using twitter to talk to people, to those ‘friends’ I am forming through my 140 characters (and for those of my followers that also follow the same people I do they get a lot of the same conversation talk too). Am I just forming meaningless conversations without actually informing my followers?
What happened to using twitter as a method of informing, engaging and acting?
Despite declaring that my tweeting days might be over through a lack of innovation or indeed I face the tweet of dialogue too much, it is all a little ironic. Let me explain:
I completely tore apart Such Sweet Sorrows (The RSC and Mudlurk Romeo and Juliet on Twitter) and it’s breaking of twitter conventions and rules despite the fact it was innovative when it came to play over those 6 weeks in our Twitter time lines. Surely this is one of the most innovative uses a theatre company has come up with so far beyond the ROH’s Twitter Opera for a online audience? Even my constant highlighting of when marketing in and for theatre the need for dialogue on Twitter seems ironic now when all I do myself is create the dialogue just without the justification.
I have also discussed numerous times how Twitter is a constantly evolving organism and arts organisations have to be open and ready to adapt to this. Naturally twitter is still developing in its early years, and we are still finding where it best fits into our work but also into our own personal accounts and personalities. Despite this there is a constant nagging doubt in my mind that arts organisations have twitter ‘figured out’ and as an audience we are still plugging into the marketing stream and accepting it for what it is. We all know why arts organisations use Twitter, it’s marketing, it’s the possibility of bums on seats, but what about the innovative methods of engagement that Twitter can be used for?
If indeed Twitter is a tool to evolve with, then I, as a person who uses it for my own personal uses as well as for companies I work with on a theatre marketing basis, I have to learn to adapt. I’m unsure as of yet as to what that might mean, but the feeling that I’ve lost my ability to tweet beyond mundane is currently haunting me and the twitter persona’s I have.
Do I just continue to tweet a former shadow of myself, or do I call it a day and hang up my tweeting fingers and actually put them to better use?