Has Twitter Jumped the Shark?

Please, make it go away...

By Scott Brodbeck
|  Thursday, Apr 2, 2009  |  Updated 7:45 AM EDT
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Has Twitter Jumped the Shark?

The author has seen the enemy, and it is our pointless tweets.

Please, God, make Twitter go away.

Twitter, if you don't know already, is the exalted domain of media types, politicians, Hollywood celebrities and other assorted narcissists.

No longer is every passing thought wasted on your own consciousness. Now everybody can know what you think of Paula's outfit on the latest airing of "American Idol."

Everywhere you turn, there’s another article or segment about Twitter. The social messaging service is the greatest thing since sliced bread and Barack Obama, at least as far as the media is concerned. But make no mistake, today’s “Congressional tweets: All a-Twitter on Capitol Hill" is tomorrow's "Sexual Predators Follow Kids On Twitter."

Yes, the Twitter backlash is upon us. The novelty is running out. The shark is waiting to be jumped.  And for good reason.

The vocabulary alone is grating to the eyes and ears. "Twitter?" "Tweet?" "TwitPic?" Then there's the inevitable, awkward moment where a hapless television personality accidentally uses a word that's slang for a part of the female anatomy in reference to Twitter (ironic uses excluded).

The Twitter phenomenon has already laid waste to Facebook, which recently introduced a very Twitter-like home page. What was once a genuinely useful way to keep up with your friends' lives is now a vast wasteland of people randomly bragging about their unexceptional lives or promoting their blog/company/charity/etc.

Now OnStar is apparently thinking about bringing the same self-indulgent and voyeuristic functionality to GM vehicles. Imagine, one minute an OnStar operator is helping police respond to a serious accident, the next he or she is helping someone tell the world about how rude the Taco Bell drive-thru attendant was.

If you don't believe that the Twitter hype has reached the point of absurdity and oversaturation, consider the following Google News searches:

  • "obama europe trip" - 4,819 articles
  • "north korea" - 29,615 articles
  • "twitter" - 53,122 articles

Yes, the threat of nuclear annihilation takes a distant backseat to the genius behind 140-character status updates (weren't we already using those 10 years ago?), and the president's first overseas trip isn't even 1/10th as deserving of coverage and analysis.

There is some good news for the Twitter-haters. Twitter has yet to generate any revenue. It's awash in tens of millions of dollars of venture capital money, and is still "researching" a business plan.

Yes, if the company can't figure out how to make money, there's a possibility that Twitter could fizzle away as quickly as it exploded into the national zeitgeist. One could only hope that such a blow could be struck for self-effacement in the face of so much self-involvement.

See how long the author goes before he breaks down and accepts that Twitter is here to stay: http://twitter.com/scottbrodbeck

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