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The meaning of @realdonaldtrump

How significant can a tweet can be? We can point to isolated cases of individual tweets going viral, creating controversy and producing material outcomes in the world. But isolated tweets rarely have such significance. Instead, we need to look at a Twitter feed as a unit of analysis, taking someone’s entire […]

Why it’s fine to ‘broadcast’ on Twitter

Foremost amongst the guidance offered about Twitter is the claim that it is fundamentally a conversational platform. One shouldn’t simply ‘broadcast’. It’s for discussion and engagement. There’s an element of truth in this but it’s one which can be lost through repetition, as the status of received wisdom stops us from thinking critically […]

Social media and populism 

This excellent essay by Jan-Werner Müller in the London Review of Books raises an important issue about the forms of political mobilisation facilitated by social media:  Trump has called himself the Hemingway of the 140 characters. He has ‘the best words’. He loves Twitter, he says, because it’s like having […]

The growth of the Twinterns

This is apparently growing rapidly: why pay staff to do this when you can get desperate graduates to do it for free? Want to jump start a social media marketing campaign for your business but don’t have the time or social media savvy in Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, blogs or similar […]

the coming copyright wars on twitter

This is a very interesting trend, though one I suspect could lead in some unfortunate directions: Ever been the victim of plagiarism on Twitter—or, dare we say, the shameful purveyor of it? The social network seems to be putting an end to those pirated tweets by cracking down on users who […]

#TwitterGate: the ethics of live tweeting

Some useful resources: A storify of the hashtag If you don’t have social media, you are no one: How social media enriches conferences for some but risks isolating other The Academic Twitterazzi An idea is a dangerous thing to quarantine Tweeting out loud: ethics, knowledge and social media in academe […]

Resonance and subjectivity on twitter

In four years of using Twitter regularly, I’ve often found others tweeting things that resonate with me and vice versa. In fact one could plausibly suggest that these experiences play an important role in making continued use of the service appealing. What do I mean by ‘resonate’? I mean knowing where someone […]

How not to use twitter as an academic

I usually tend towards the view that there’s no right or wrong way to use social media. These evaluations only make sense relative to some prior purpose and so I’m sceptical when blog posts pronounce on the right way to use Twitter or parallel claims with other platforms. However I realise there are a few things […]

A Eulogy for Twitter

Initially this article irritated me immensely. As clichés go, “it’s not as good as it used to be” is one I find peculiarly obnoxious, at least when it relates to the internet. But I think it actually makes some very interesting points: Those fictions have proven foolish, one-by-one. The service […]