Wednesday, March 11, 2009


This comes from Bill Simmons, heralded sports columnist for ESPN:

"The more interesting angle for me is how Twitter and Facebook reflect where our writing is going thanks to the Internet. In 15 years, writing went from "reflecting on what happened and putting together some coherent thoughts" to "reflecting on what happened as quickly as possible" to "reflecting on what's happening as it's happening" to "here are my half-baked thoughts about absolutely anything and I'm not even going to attempt to entertain you," or as I like to call it, Twitter/Facebook Syndrome. Do my friends REALLY CARE if I send out an update, "Bill is flying on an airplane finishing a mailbag right now?" (Which is true, by the way.) I just don't think they would. I certainly wouldn't. That's why I refuse to use Twitter."

What say ye?


Schmetterling said...

I say it's funny you posted this the same day my brother posted this. That's what I say

Th. said...


I agree. But I don't see a reason to use tools the way others use them. Do you?

Ella said...

what say I to what? this random guy's opinion? why don't you post your own opinion about Twitter/Facebook/anotherwasteoftime?

Peter V. Hilton said...

I say yer readers be dodging the question.

I don't think facebook and twitter really count as writing. They're social networks. Sure, most writing now is not really intelligent writing being done by intelligent people (well, okay, the people may be intelligent, despite facebook junkieness), but most writing that gets paid for and inspires followings still takes a measure of talent.

Oh, and PS: the security word for this comment is "mormion." I just thought I'd share with everyone.

Carl Duzett said...

In thinking about it, I've come to conclude along the same lines as you, Peter. I think it's easy to say "l00k wot da teenagers r writing on teh internets!!111" and claim that it's negatively affecting the greater field of "writing." But I don't think we can consider Twitter and Facebook mediums of "writing." I think this downward spiral that Simmons is trying to identify refers more to people relegating the textual aspect of the Social Internet to lower levels as the social aspect gets stronger and stronger. People started using the Internet more not because of a love for great prose, but because of its social capabilities. "Writing" on the Internet is just becoming more and more like regular social interactions.

Th., I guess we don't have to use Twitter the way others do. Which makes me wonder: how would you use it?