Doug Haslam

Gischeleman: "To Create With the Mind"

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When to Twitter, when to blog?

Microblogging as replacement for blogging? Hogwash!
Those of you who know me, or at least have read this blog a fair bit, know I use Twitter. A lot. Twitter is commonly known as microblogging, which has begged the question often in the past year: will microblogging, specifically Twitter, replace blogging?

The answer, obvious to me, is no. Twitter messages (“Tweets”), limited to 140 characters, cannot convey the kind of detail a blog post or other medium can. Twitter can replace some of the more trivial, quickie posts that many bloggers write (Instapundit , though not a trivial blog, comes to mind), but it also serves as a linkway to the more substantial blogposts, be they our own or someone else’s. In fact, I call Twitter my “hub” for all my media.

If the words spill off the page, get a bigger book
This came up to me a few days ago, when I was trying to follow a conversation which took place across many Tweets– and kept going. The point was, I couldn’t follow it, prompting this from me:

“There comes a pt in Twitter conv’s where it makes more sense to put it all in a blog post & link. Equiv of stop email & get on the phone!”

Well, of course, the ever astute Beth Kanter asked me:

@dough have u written a post about when u stop twitter and blog it?

Erm, no. Until now.

The formula, however, is simple to me, and implied above; if you can’t fit your thoughts in 140 characters, introduce the topic on Twitter and link back to a blog post or other media.

What’s your take? Does Twitter replace blogs at all? Do you mix your media and link it all through each other as one? When does one medium become useless, making it time to move your conversation elsewhere?

4 Responses to When to Twitter, when to blog?

  1. Connie Reece says:

    Like you, I’m very active on Twitter. It hasn’t replaced blogging but my blog posts tend to be less frequent and longer, more thoughtful. I think conversation is much more fluid and flexible now, flowing back and forth from blog comments to Twitter to Facebook to other social networks. That makes it harder to follow the thread of conversation, but allows for more diverse input.

  2. Beth Kanter says:

    Doug,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I think Twitter is a nice compliment – and a way to throw some ideas out there, link to others, and expand your thinking through connecting. It isn’t a replacement for blogging. It might be a replacement for tagging — the sharing information part, not the retrieval part.

    Here’s the nonprofit discussion the topic which prompted my tweet to you ..

    http://beth.typepad.com/beths_blog/2008/03/marnie-webbs-ch.html

  3. Doug Haslam says:

    Beth, thanks!

    I could also have made more of the bit I said: “Equiv of stop email & get on the phone!”

    Is Twitter to blog as email is to phone? probably not.

    Connie, thanks for your comment as well– I previously blogged about “Cross Media Coversations” at http://doughaslam.com/2007/11/02/cross-media-conversations/

  4. Don’t let the medium stop the idea. If it takes 700 characters, (that’s 5 perfect twooshes) then let it rip right there and then. Nothing to say you can’t repeat or further develop the thought, but if you are engaged in a conversation then tweet away.

    If the idea is not specifically related to a tweet(s) then it is probably best blogged then introduced, seeded, pimped, take your pick on twitter.

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