I have a strange relationship with Twitter. I love that I have got to know so many great people through it – some I’ve met in person, some I’m yet to meet, and others I may never meet in person.
But sometimes I have to shut off the noise.
I currently follow 200+ people. And that gets very noisy. And I just can’t do it sometimes. So I have a reduced list of 50ish people that I follow normally. These are generally people I would consider friends, or if they were to disappear from Twitter I would worry about them and try to get in touch via Facebook or some other means (stalking, inappropriate Googling etc.). There are some funny accounts in there to keep me amused too, and some serious information type accounts, but on the whole it’s real people tweeting about real stuff.
I sometimes wonder how people who follow 100’s of accounts keep track of everyone in their feeds if they don’t use lists. And this then leads me to the suspicion that we are all saying things but nothing actually gets heard by anyone.
This theory was completely thrown out at the weekend when I met a wonder Tweep for the first time and was asked about my health. @lil_mel and I have very rarely tweeted each other (bad film night tweets generally) and it came as a bit of a surprise that she asked me.
I know I tend to carry on a bit sometimes about ill-health (yes, I know I really have no reason to. Yes, I know others are worse off than me. Yes, I know, shush now – I’m trying to do better, I promise), but it was strange to realise that there was someone out there that not only read those tweets but was paying enough attention to then talk about it when we were face to face.
I do it too, to be honest. There are people that I follow (even on my reduced list) that I very rarely, if ever, tweet to, but I know exactly what’s going on in their life, to the point that I could hold a conversation with them if we bumped into each other. (Whoa, comma overload!)
So, as is usual with my blog posts, I’ve rambled slightly and haven’t really got to anything that could be considered a point.
Except this: even if you feel like you’re alone and no one is listening to you, if you’re tweeting away and you have followers, someone somewhere is listening and caring about what you say, even if you don’t think so, even if you don’t get a reply from anyone.
And I guess for my part I will try and reply to more people when stuff is going on in their lives, even if all I can offer is an encouraging word or a virtual hug.
And that’s the wonderful thing about Twitter; even if you’re sat in a room on your own in despair, joy, pain, relief, disgrace, anger, or contentment… there’s a world full of people that will listen to anything you say.
You’re never alone when you’re on Twitter.