I had bacon for breakfast
Says it all really.
Billions have been made in Silicon Valley by wrapping HTML angle brackets around 1980s protocols and calling it “innovation”. IRC became instant message, email became Facebook, and SMS became WhatsApp and Twitter. But the latter, having failed to add anything interesting for years, should cut its losses and find a buyer. So …
"email became Facebook"
Only 1 billion people used FB on one particular day and I question the validity of that statistic. Rather more used email, that day and all days.
Comparing FB usage to email volume is akin to comparing Linux to other OSs (on the desktop) in terms of numbers. So sayeth a Gentoo powered penguin type with absolutely no basis in confirmed fact but lots of opinion.
I think Andrew's point is what Facebook effectively is. Not very much but seemingly enough to make the service popular and financially viable. Though I do wonder how viable any of these services would be without the constant free promotion on things like public television. I'm still waiting for some serious studies of the ROI on advertising on these services.
All these login-based services promise to provide oodles of "valuable" demographic data for advertisers but I've yet to see numbers that such engagement is any higher than it is around the more splatter-gun approach of ads. In fact, I wonder whether it's not more difficult to get people's attention when they're busy reading a stream than when they're consuming other media more passively.
"IRC became instant message, email became Facebook, and SMS became WhatsApp and Twitter. "
Correction: they all became commercialized. The original services still live on as separate protocols.
I don't remember being able to install a local version of FACEBOOKd on my servers...
It's 2015 and we've got into this position where it's all about user-base growth and revenues. Nobody anywhere interested in the actual huge pile of cash they burn everywhere. Twitter's main problem is it has no plan in place where it figures out how it's going to make actual money to offset it's costs, just accepts that world+dog is going to jump on the hype train of old like tulip mania.
This is the stuff market crashes and pension fund derp-ups are made of.
My cynic button has been pressed again.. So we have boutique tech banking advisor saying that Twitter is so inept it should be sold. Which raises the questions....
1) If it's so bad, who's going to want to buy it based on his assessment?
2) How much will he and his investment "friends" make on the deal?
3) Maybe this is just a reverse psychology pitch because he and his friends went short on the stock and now need to cough up the shares?
I do agree though, Twitter is pretty much useless. Let the thing die. The only ones who will miss it are the new organizations who build whole stories around a Tweet without having to do anything on their own.
For the same reason people talk endlessly about themselves and other people, with the added bonus that Twitter makes you feel like you talk to the world and the world reads your words and talks back.
It's the ultimate self-aggrandizer. Even when you know yourself that what you're posting is abysmally useless, somebody, somewhere will react, thereby justifying your post.
I think Twitter is actually a psychology test, for the members AND its management.
Twitter is the Pet Rock of the current decade. If you got in on the ground floor you stand to make a bundle as long as you get out soon enough. Don't ask why you made a bundle, just take the money and run. Don't try to repeat it, you'll lose the money you had when you ran.
I've got a twitter account but only used it for keeping up to date with science and technology news etc, never for tweeting/posting anything. However, facebook now does that better; haven't logged into Twitter in months. There are lots of specialist news / technical groups on Facebook and you can easily hop between them to read what's going on and share comments, pretty much like this El Reg news/forum. Note: It isn't compulsory to post any personal information on Facebook or have an avatar featuring your mugshot or even specify a legit date of birth etc. Just treat Facebook like a collection of internet news sites + forums.
It is no surprise that Twitter has not been able to harvest the sort of user information that would allow it to target advertising more directly to users. Twitter having a limited character count lends it self to condensed messages that have little or no extraneous information from which to harvest user information. The way that Twitter is used to fanboy, propagate jokes and hash tag punnery is less about things as it is about people makes it more difficult again to harvest the advertising life blood of internet entrepreneurship.
But of course the only thing that matters is puffing up you concept enough to generate the most sellable value and palming it off to some deep pockets -- believing in your product is for losers.
People stick stuff on Twitter because they'd like other people to see it.
People read Twitter because they like to see what (some) other people are saying.
It's all very simple and basic and doesn't deserve criticism or antagonism unless you think it's meant to do something different, like making IT middlemen, the digital carpet baggers, lots of cash.
The web and the entertainment industry alike are full of these accountants who expect creatives to perform magic so that they can move in and suck cash off the bottom.
Criticising Twitter for this is like complaining that your petrol station doesn't sell Michelin star food.
Yea, with apology to Borges, Twitter is like a room containing an infinite1 number of water coolers, each labelled by topic. Or, like a lossy forum where no-one expects you to have read every post.
1. Okay, for English speakers it probably tops out at around 1.2E198, at which point conversations would become a graph between water coolers.
If you think about it, Twitter is basically a limited incarnation of IRC.
Its entirely possible to wrap Twitter into a front end and use each hashtag as a chatroom.
The only major differences are the 140 character limit and the fact you cant see who is in the room unless they send a message.
BUT it does have to be driven by SOME revenue stream.
So far, advertising seems to be the primary driver of most web based sites and is certainly the only driver for free ones. (In the case of Google you usually happen to be the product not the paying consumer.)
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