A little bit bitch and a little bit buddhist always at the intersection of biology, gender, race, and culture. This blog documents my experience as a Canadian postdoc living and working in the United States. I can't promise to be PG13. In fact I promise not to be PG13.
My posts are presented as opinion and commentary and do not represent the views of LabSpaces Productions, LLC, my employer, or my educational institution.
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I don't know why I have a twitter account. I've asked multiple questions to the twittersphere and not a single reply. When I read through the twitter posts, the converations appear to be amongst a small and select group of individuals (oh my gosh a clique you say?) or the tweets are simply mast$#%*.
The question I have for you, dear tweeter. Is what do you think of the twittersphere? Oh and can anyone tell me what the competition is called when you write for a month and then count the number of words. Is it inanmudiro or something like that?
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LOL! I have to say I agree. I'm constantly struggling to understand why so many people are on twitter. I can see why bloggers are, because they have actual content to try to spread and have discussed, but for the average Joe, I see no appeal.
And...do you mean NaNoWriMo? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nanowrimo
i like it, but sorry i dont know what the name of the writing competition is
I didn't know you were on Twitter! +1 Follower right away!
I would never have seen this blog post -- or even found the entire site -- without Twitter.
Then: of course conversations on Twitter are - often but not always - between people who know each other at least a little. So what? That doesn't make them a clique. Not at all. Simply join in conversations on Twitter, see who responds, tweet at people, see if you can contribute things they would be interested in, and see if you can interest people in what you have to contribute.
Brian, I would disagree with you. Twitter is the best for the average joe. But not to be followed. Only to follow. You get access to a lot of smart people, with a much greater chance of getting an answer for a specific question. The problem is finding whom to follow.
And GirlPostDoc, sadly you don't have enough followers to use twitter reliably as a knowledge producing machine. I would say that probably you would do better at @specific people if you want the answer.
Twitter is a tool. With all the connotations that a tool has.
@yannis, there's too much noise on twitter to sift through. I have 5 different lists I've created to try to filter some of it out and its still hard to follow. If I didn't have stuff from LabSpaces to post, I probably wouldn't use it. It's hard to have real conversations and its even harder to have real conversations with multiple parties. Friendfeed does a much better job of allowing twitter like posts followed by discussion. It's unfortunate that never really caught on.
I have had the exact same experience...ask a scientific question no response. Ask about a brand or something commercial and receive a follow or a bot response.
I tend to think of twitter as talking to myself. I go to facebook for responses...but I guess I "know" those people. But facebook has become more of a rss feed reader these days.
As an aside I have been following your blog with google reader for a while now and I really like it.
@ Brian. NaNoWriMo I can sleep in peace now. Thank you.
@Dr. Zen LOL.
@Gurdur You're right about finding interesting sites. It's great for that. But as for conversations, I tend to agree with Brian. Tried to do the @ thing didn't really work so well and it may well be as yannis suggested I don't have enough followers.
@yannis perhaps the problem is having too many people that you follow. how often does a request for information get lost to the tweeteruniverse. Either you are online all the time (ridiculous) or you have to sift through too many tweets to see a single request for information. There's got to be a better way.
@ uranotaenia. Thanks! I found facebook to be a great tool to ask scientific information. However, facebook is only as good as the friends you have. Many of mine are in my field and so asking a question related to work usually elicits a useful response.
I've had the same experience, but it is good for driving traffic to a blog or other site. I also use it as a filtering tool... rather than go to a dozen news sites I just click the links people I follow tweet. Can always stay on top of the biggest sci stories as they happen (if people are on when I'm on - here on the other side of the world).
so you're tweets are not coming through to me, as I follow you and haven't seen anything other than notices about blog posts. I find the user interface makes a difference to. I don't use twitter.com, but echofon for firefox and iphone. Makes it easier. I also don't get many answers to twitter q's but I think it has to do with (1) my small number of followers (2) time zone differentials. The ppl I tend to have a back & forth with are the ppl that in the same time zone as me. And they were readers of my blog.
@psycasm It's true about the biggest sci stories. I like it for that.
@SM That's strange. I haven't ever gotten any of your twitter q's. Echofon and iphone require gadgets. I'm from a family of luddites. Gadgets are the enemy.
Twitter and an RT lead me here.
Twitter 'works' best when you have a critical mass of followers. Same as blogging - if no one knows you'rre there no one will answer you back
I still don’t think I get Twitter. I feel like I am at a large table dominated by extroverts and friends sharing
inside jokes. I have never been good in large groups! I sit quietly in the corner and when I am brave enough to interject my voice goes unacknowledged. I feel like the new girl at middle school all over again – lost and ignored by all but a few kind kids who have befriended me out of pity. As far as I can see twitter is all about shameless self promotion so I promote my blogs and some I read and find interesting but not really sure of the point of it all.
Also here because of twitter!
Echofon does not require a gadget, there is an Echofon for Mac thingie you can download to your desktop. It rocks my world! Everything is super streamlined, and it organizes your lists, notifications, searches, all very nicely.
Getting twitter to "work" for you does take some effort in the beginning, because like others have said, people have to be paying attention to you first. Also, it's silly to try to "keep up" with your stream, I use it more like a snapshot of what people are talking about at any given moment.
Twitter is great but I understand the frustration. I always try to respond to people. Tho I ignore the bots. So I think its great for networking and information.
Does anybody need any cheese or crackers here? Perhaps a fruit plate?
Pate de Foie Gras?
And yeah. It sometimes takes a bit to get twitter to work for you. I had kept up with a lot of sci bloggers on there, but didn't think any of them would follow back/pay attention until I started injecting myself into some conversations on there. It also didn't hurt that Dr. Manaster RT'ed some of my comments.
you don't get my twitter q's bc you don't follow me:) My stream is not public so you have to send a request to get them, which you can easily do by clicking on me. I"ll send you a DM.
I'll just add this.
1) A suprising number of us are introverts, and easily hurt. So? Some of us work through it and develop coping mechanisms. If you won't try, you won't get anywhere. Please see my very last remark in this comment here, just below.
2) Twitter works well for those who make it work well for them. They try.
3) It doesn't matter at first how many followers you have. When I first started out on Twitter, I had maybe 3 followers for a long, long while, and now I have many more. What matters much more are two factors:
-- who you follow
--- what you say and contribute. Do you show genuine interest and engagement in what others are saying?
Most important: SHOW GENUINE INTEREST IN OTHERS. Before you ask them to show interest in you.
4) If you won't make the effort, don't blame the others, or blame Twitter. Seriously. It's not their fault.
5) My very last remark about this: I put in my Twitter handle in my comment above for a reason. It was so so anyone who felt like it could come along and actually, like, have a Twitter conversation with me. I may only be a medium to small fish on Twitter, but it's precisely by having such conversations that you will eventually get somewhere on Twitter.
Work out what you want to say, even if it's just personal, have the courage to initiate conversations with others, don't play blame-games, and just be prepared to plug away.
Again: my Twitter handle is @Gurdur, and I enjoy conversations.