Twitter. For years, I didn’t entertain using this social networking tool, largely because I didn’t really understand it. Being a little on the verbose side, I couldn’t imagine limiting my brain farts to a mere 140 characters. Furthermore, none of my real-life friends were on Twitter, so why bother?
It was my good friend J who pushed me in the direction of Twitter last year and prompted me to cheat on Facebook, ultimately ending my happy marriage with it (I’m still on Facebook, but I pretty much loathe it, owing to a lot of stuff that appears on my newsfeed that is of absolutely no interest to me whatsoever).
I began my relationship with Twitter before I began blogging, and before I began Chick’s Nursery List. I still didn’t understand what it was all about, but like most things, after I began using it, the penny began to drop. I didn’t have much of a purpose to begin with, so followed some companies/brands that I liked. I also followed the odd celebrity here and there.
One thing that became apparent was how potentially ‘close’ you could get to celebrities that you liked. At least, it felt like you could get close, as you could interact with them instantly at the mere push of a few buttons. You could send the odd witty tweet, and feel a warmth inside when your chosen celeb ‘favourited’ your tweet. And then there’s the sheer joy of getting a retweet, or even an actual response.
But really, the likelihood of actually interacting with your idols is so unlikely, even for a Twitter genius like me. I have 400 or so followers, and all I have to do is get into a Twitter conversation with one or two of them before my notifications start lighting up my phone every 23 seconds. So can you imagine how hectic a celebrity’s notifications window is, probably on a 24-hour basis. People desperately vying for a moment of their attention and adoration. It is no wonder you’re so unlikely to get a response of any sort from celebs.
So as well Twitter enabling you to have the prospect of being so close (but yet so far) to your celebrity idols, it also allows to you to gain a glimpse into the minds of your favourite celebs, via their very own 140-character brain farts. And my goodness, what a put-off that can be. I quickly went off several lifelong rock idols from my early teens, largely because of the nonsense I saw them writing via their Twitter accounts. And how gutted I now feel when I listen to their music, the music that I used to love, but am now unable to rid my brain of the pervy nonsense they tweeted shortly before I unfollowed them.
And don’t even get me started on poor grammar, spelling and general inability to string a (140 character) sentence together. I maintain that there is nothing more off-putting than reading poorly-written drivel (as opposed to well-written drivel?).
So after a short experience of following a few celebrities, I quickly realised that there was no real point of following someone you have no hope of interacting with and who writes poorly-composed, poorly-spelt nonsense. And I swiftly deleted the vast majority of them.
I actually feel a level of sadness that I ever ‘went there’ with these celebrities on Twitter. Getting that close has shattered images I had of them, which I would have happily held onto had I not known any better. People that were once so incredibly cool to me are now just silly idiots on the internet, promoting themselves in a vulgar, unimaginative and uneducated manner.
Once I began blogging and working on Chick’s Nursery List, I soon had a real purpose on Twitter. Networking became the aim, and most of the accounts I follow on Twitter are other bloggers and companies related to children or general lifestyle stuff (now there’s a non-specific description for you!). I have a great network of bloggers on my account nowadays, and they all interact with the same enthusiasm as I do. I love engaging with brands to let them know that I’m enjoying their products. I have a handful of favourite tweeters (minus the monkeymen); my favourite jewellery brand, a radio show, a local copywriter and a musician (who is able to spell and use grammar proficiently). I still follow a couple of celebrities, but none of them are hugely famous and the rare times that they use their Twitter accounts, they seem to tweet satisfactorily.
So there you go, my reasons for not following celebrities on Twitter. The illusion is much better than the (Twitter) reality.