Monday, 11 May 2009

Dragged kicking and tweeting into the technolgy age

Two years ago I was one of the 34 people in the world who didn’t have a mobile phone. It was partly a social experiment to see how long I could go without one and partly because I am not that interested (or proficient) in technology.

I’ve come a long way in 2 years. Now I can adjust the settings on my mobile phone, I can blog, I can facebook, I can zip music, I have even stored my mobile phone contacts on a website in case I ever lose my phone. But the frustrating thing about technology for me is that just as I pat myself on the back for having mastered a device or application, something new comes along which seems to change (confuse) everything again.

Enter twitter. A bit like email, but not, a bit like texting, but not, a bit like blogging but not, a bit like instant messaging, but not. So what is it and what is the point? I can’t really tell yet but I have been persuaded to try it out.

About a month ago my technology embracing sister and brother registered Lantana cafe on twitter, printed a sign to display at the café, and sat me down for a lesson:
I can tweet about anything as long as it is less than 140 characters.

Following isn't stalking.

I can follow anyone and anyone can follow me.

If someone does follow me it is polite to thank them and follow them back.

I have to beware of twitter spammers ‘twammers’ who follow everyone. I don’t need to thank them or follow them- in fact I should block twammers so that they can't follow me.
I nodded and promised to try and get excited about twitter.

Since then I have felt the weight of expectation descend on me every time I am alerted via email that ‘x is now following you’ on twitter. I need to justify their decision to follow me. I need to tweet about something.

The only thing that will make me tweet more is if I start identifying as a tweeter and put myself out there in the tweeting community. So on Saturday I took the sign that has been sitting on my desk and stuck it up on the coffee machine for all to see.

right alongside Doonesbury's Roland Hedley who has set the tweeting benchmark high.


BRIGID said...

Oh dear if you have found the nerve to become a "Tweeterer" then I guess I will have to venture down that techno future path as well. Love your blogs- ready for the next one.

Anonymous said...

guess what cafe features in the June/July Australian edition of Vogue Entertaining?? will send you a copy when I get one....

Peter H said...

Why not use the Tweets for treats? Boost your audience and footfall by giving away the odd cupcake to next follower who comes in (note: preferably when I'm in the neighbourhood).

louise de Lima said...

Check out our post about the lovely Lantana. Hope you like it!

Devora said...


Love your little restaurant/coffee nook. Are you looking for staff at all?

Shelagh Ryan said...

Hi Devora- I could be. Do you want to drop in your resume?

Shelagh Ryan said...

Hi Louise- thanks for the kind words. Hope to see you in at Lantana again.x

Adam said...

Hi Shelagh,

I just read your blog pretty much from cover to cover over brekkie and wanted to say how much I like it. Lantana sounds lovely and I'll have to make an effort to pop in some day, just one thing - we need some of that Antipodean passion down in Brighton!

I tried to find an email address for you on here, on the cafe's site and on twitter to write this fawning message but could not. As a web designer I'd say get one on there somewhere!

Oh, and on a more relevant note I'm sure you've seen this but in case you haven't it's a clever way a cafe in Shoreditch use Twitter to promote/support what they do -

All the best!


Shelagh Ryan said...

Thanks Adam- i'm sure there are lots of improvements that could be made to the website and the blog to make it more user friendly and relevant but I just haven't had the resources or time to focus on it. It's on the list of things to do!

Thanks for taking the time to read the blog and for the link to bakertweet- I had heard about it. I'm starting to get my head around tweeting and its uses. Say hi if you make it in to Lantana.

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