Allan Takes Aim Blog

Do you Twitter or Witter

Posted on: 2 June 2009

Published: The Chronicle Tuesday, 26 May 2009

 Do you Twitter or Witter?

I think the person who suggested to me that The Chronicle engage a “Twitter” journalist was taking the Micky. But game for a laugh, the more I thought about the idea the more attractive it became. Now you might think the idea daft but with Sky News now having a Twitter Correspondent, newspapers are likely to do the same before long. So let The Chronicle lead the way!

Not that I use Twitter (I’m a letters to the editor man myself), although Boadicea says I witter a lot. For once I agree with her but, like me, if you try to sooth nerves frayed by twittering telephone calls and e-mails without letting your consumption of Johnnie Walker rise to danger levels, you, too, will witter. Not that this blinds me to the fact that some people use Twitter to keep up to date with the latest gossip and sometimes start Twittering some of their own.

But if The Chronicle decides to launch a Twitter Feature – I’d like to suggest it be called ‘Tweet Space’ – the editor should write an introduction containing no more than 140 characters – spaces included – so that it complies with Twitter’s rules. For example: ‘Twitter to The Chronicle and reach 130,000 readers.’ By any measure, this introduction would be a very strong inducement to send Tweets to The Chronicle. Indeed I venture to suggest that for current Twitterers, a guaranteed audience of 130,000 would be the equivalent of a gold prospector finding Lasseter’s Reef.

But how valuable a medium is Twitter? Discussing the issue with friends, some said twittering was nonsense. One said it was infantile while a female academic with a PhD in Gossip said Twitter was suitable only for people with language deficiency and that Tweets were hastening a decline in literacy standards. As for myself, the only conclusion I could draw was that there were as many opinions about the value of Twitter as there is about whether or not Kevin Rudd is a good Prime Minister.

The Dr of Gossip, also incensed at people thinking good gossip could be passed on in fewer than 140 characters went on to say that, when teaching advanced classes, she tells her students the absolute minimum time required to pass on gossip is 15 minutes on the telephone or a meeting during which people have time to drink two pots of tea. Of course if hot gossip, extra telephone time and more pots of tea would be needed.  She may well be right because to the light of my life, Boadicea, gossip seems so much more of a necessity than does food and drink that at times her gossiping periods last as long as two hours and four pots of tea.

A last word from the good Dr of Gossip was that she hoped the editor of The Chronicle wasn’t a man and that if the feature went ahead the journalist appointed should be a woman, as only a woman would understand which Tweets should be accepted because men had no idea of what constituted gossip. Indeed for as long as she could remember, she said, the only gossip men seemed to indulge in wasn’t worth a Tweet.

But women are not the only Twitterers. Canberra might even have more male than female Twitterers, many of whom are politicians. Unfortunate however, and for some time yet, we will have to put up with both sets of Twitters as they Twitter about either the Federal or ACT budgets. 

Federal Government Twitterers will say that despite having had to make hard decisions their budget was generous: ACT Government Twitterers will say the same. However, many voters say the generosity in both cases was an illusion: they gave with one hand and took away with the other.

In the ACT the Greens will Twitter, among other things, that preventing public service redundancies, getting a library at Kingston (are they serious?) and creating Green jobs is due to them, not Government generosity.

And last but not least, ACT Liberals will Twitter that, in Government, they would have done better; that Canberrans face a tougher time than need be; and that if anyone should be made redundant it should be the Government. 

NB. For Canberra’s local community news get The Chronicle.








1 Response to "Do you Twitter or Witter"

攻めようにも勝手に進んでればやりようがないの。一応第三者機関の検査が基礎工事で1回入ってるはずなので それだけが頼りのような???

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