As is usually the case, the way we use tools changes over time. I’m wondering if how I use Twitter is going to change because of some of the issues that have been discussed this weekend. Probably not, I’d been starting to change how I use Twitter about a week or two ago.
While Twitter has had some problems in the past and certainly is having another round of troubles, I too have problems that need fixing. I’ve found that the way I’ve used the service in the past does not scale well, and clients such as Twhirl have added to the problem.
It’s TOO EASY to keep flipping over to my Twhirl window whenever it “pings’ at me, scrolling through up to 20 messages to see what’s going on. Like some mad Pavlovian subject, I have to see what’s been updated. Now that FriendFeed is also in my Twhirl stream, it’s gotten much, much worse.
So I’m changing how I use Twitter. I’m shutting off the notifications for the bulk of the Twitter and FriendFeed updates. I’ll keep notifications on for Replies and Direct Messages. I’ll check in when I have a few minutes and review what’s in the last page or two on the website, but that’s the extent of it.
Twitter has become extremely important as a social and communications tool, but it’s also become too big of a time sink to keep on top of during the day. I know several people who shut it off during the main part of the workday – something I’ve put off as much as possible – and tune back in after work hours.
I still encourage everyone to contact me through Twitter first and foremost. A DM in Twitter will get directly to me (they are all forwarded to my phone) and I respond to every Reply, so don’t think I’m not monitoring it if you don’t see me Twittering a lot.
My Twitter Profile: http://twitter.com/rickmahn
My FriendFeed Profile: http://friendfeed.com/rickmahn
I’m curious what techniques you may be using to manage your Twitter stream? What can you share with our Twitter friends to help ease the volume of information that speeds past?