As I mentioned in an earlier post, I finally got Twitter a few weeks ago. My friends have been pressuring me to create an account for almost a year now but I refused to join because of my loyalty to Facebook. After attending a couple lectures in my Comm Tech class, I decided to join Twitter for reasons different from why I joined Facebook. I use Facebook to interact with friends and share photos, videos, and likes/dislikes. I thought Twitter was going to be the exact same so I did not see a point in having both accounts.
After creating a Twitter account I have changed my view on the social networking site. Twitter is a great way to interact with not only friends but organizations and people you admire. It allows me to “follow” prominent people like Zach Galifianakis and Paws for the Cause, an organization that raises money to support welfare animals.
In my Comm Tech class, my professor raised the question of “what is responsible twittering?” on our class discussion board. I want to start by stating what Twitter was originally designed for. In an article by Courtenay Bloomington and Susan C. Herring of Indiana University, it explains the original purpose of Twitter: “A web-based microblogging service that allows users to send short status update messages to others.” Unfortunately, Twitter has not remained this way for everyone. It is designed for users to answer the question “What are you doing?”, not “Are you mad at your parents” or “Do you like that girl?” (Bloomington, Herring). The unfortunate part about Twitter is that not everyone uses it for the actual intention of the site.
There have been many cases where people post inappropriate, controversial opinions or statements on the site. Chris Brown is guilty of posting tweets on his Twitter that are offensive to young fans. He reportedly swore and bragged to his “haters” after winning a Grammy in early February. This is not the first time Brown has been criticized for his “irresponsible twittering”. In November 2011 he also expressed angry tweets towards his fans for dragging on the Rihanna incident in 2009.
My question is: What is considered responsible and irresponsible twittering? I think twitter is often used for the wrong reasons. I do feel that Chris Brown is an example of irresponsible twittering. Almost every time he has posted angry comments, he has either deleted them or apologized. The celebrities are not the only one who are guilty of “irresponsible twittering”. Because users are able to connect with favourite celebrities, it allows fans and haters to express whatever it is they want to say.
I am fortunate enough to hear what my classmates think irresponsible twittering is. A few people seemed to believe that it was irresponsible to follow random people or have random people follow you. I can understand that it seems weird to allow strangers to see what you post but I think it is up to that person to decide what they post. It is obviously not smart to share personal information like your address and phone number to strangers. I think it is more important to focus on what you post. I consider cyber bullying irresponsible, as well as dishonesty. There were some good points made on the class discussion board about who looks at what people post. When it is time to look for a career, employers have been known to check Facebook and Twitter accounts. Not only should people want others respect, but people should respect themselves. Constantly swearing or saying profane things is not responsible and people will lose respect for that person.
Here is a great example of what I consider irresponsible twittering. In this case, it is irresponsible “Face booking” but it has the same effect. American resident Tommy Jordan made a video based on his daughter’s complaints about her parents on Facebook. Although I think he may have been a little dramatic, I think he delivers a good message.
My second example is one I posted on my class discussion board and received a lot of feedback from. It is reactions from girls after Chris Brown’s appearances at the Grammys. The article includes twenty-five posts from girls saying they would let Chris Brown beat them any day. Obviously the girls are referring to the incident in 2009 when he beat his then girlfriend Rihanna. Regardless if the girls are joking or not, this is definitely irresponsible Twittering or Facebooking. Most people agreed that the girls probably do not really wish those things but it was irresponsible of them to say such things. Read below to see what was said.
1. “BuzzFeed." BuzzFeed. 12 Feb. 2012. Web. 03 Mar. 2012. <http://www.buzzfeed.com/mjs538/horrible-reactions-to-chris-brown-at-the-grammys>.
2. Bloomington, Courtenay, and Susan C. Herring. "Beyond Microblogging : Conversation and Collaboration via Twitter." Mendeley Research Networks. 2009. Web. 03 Apr. 2012. <http://www.mendeley.com/research/beyond-microblogging-conversation-collaboration-via-twitter/>
3. Jordan, Tommy. "Facebook Parenting: For the Troubled Teen." YouTube. YouTube, 08 Feb. 2012. Web. 05 Mar. 2012. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kl1ujzRidmU>.