Twitter: Faking a Train Delay

On: October 15, 2008
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About Arno de Natris
Finished the Master in New Media in august 2009. See for mor details about me on


Last Sunday, I tried to put Twitter in some theoretical framework with surveillance theory. I went further in a more practical exploration of this microblogging application. Twitter is more than just a message board as compared to in my last blog entry. As promoted in the U.S. Airforce sponsored video, Twitter has enormous possibilities, although you can doubt if it’s al positive.

Automated feed on Twitter: T-Ford machine
It’s possible to broadcast (I like using that term here) feeds of your blog. With Twitterfeed you can send, for example, RSS feeds with Twitter. That can be any feed you can find. You can broadcast a blog without permission of the owner of that blog. You only need an OpenID (what is?) and than you can add any feed you like. I see a possibility for every MoM student for broadcasting the MoM blog to our followers. In fact, I can, even if I don’t have a democratic permission of my colleagues. All I need is the RSS or Atom feed url.

I’ve added the Atom feed of my personal blog to my Twitter and now every thirty minutes my Twitter broadcasts my blog content to my followers. Of course, only when I’ve written new content in that last half an hour. I think the NS Twitter, the twitter broadcasting railway delays, works in this way. And with the possibility of coupling any feed to your Twitter, it’s not even for sure it’s a real NS employee that regulates the NS Twitter. Maybe he’s faking!

Trolling is a possibility, or a danger if you will, and can threat the reliability of Twitter microblogging. Can we therefore call Twitter a broadcasting peer to peer mass medium? We can, but sometimes it’s tough to tell who the real broadcasters are.

Beat the micro of microblogging
Twitter has a 140 character maximum? No, you can Twitter complete books, if you will. With Twittermail you get an e-mail address whereto you can send a message. That message appears in your Twitter. If it has more than 140 characters, it gives a ‘red more’ link. Funny feature: put a time in the subject line of your e-mail. The Twitter will appear at that time. So you can let your followers believe that you are 24/7 on Twitter, even while you are asleep. Twitter you are sleeping! ‘Wow, that’s impossible. You can’t type while you are sleeping.’ You can…

Twitter is something that’s new and growing every day. It’s more than just a simple message board and I wonder how it develops the next years. Will it conquer the digital world or is it just a hype to be debunked? Arno de Natris (MA) in 2009: ‘Twitter is sooo 2008.’? Will everybody, every company, every institution be Twittering? We’ll see.

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