Twitter is making me smarter

I can’t believe I am still trying to convince people that social-media tools can be a healthy, empowering, useful part of one’s information network. In the last week I’ve had the same conversation three times about why Twitter is not a phase and that it is a growing important part of gaining knowledge. I’m tired of having this conversation. Mostly it is with people who have never looked at a Twitter feed. I feel the same frustration for those people that I do when my 9-year-old says she dislikes a food though she has never tasted it. Ironically one of these people was my mother, who always got mad at me when I refused a food without trying it.

Of course I follow a lot of smart people on Twitter. The beauty of technology is that by giving us access to smart people who say smart things, technology can make us think we ourselves are smart too. It’s sort of like the narcoticizing of news: the postulation that people who consume news often feel as if they have participated in democracy simply by the act of reading. I’m all for it. In some ways, sharing online IS a new way to participate, as much as going to a meeting and making a statement. Both acts involve a motivation to contribute in some way.

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