The Twitter Dimension

Dan Frommer writing about Twitter on election night:

…look over at Twitter, where the room is bursting with fresh news, links, photos from everywhere, alerts that Karl Rove is melting down or that Diane Sawyer seems wasted, jokes coming so fast that you can barely keep up. (Many of them even funny.) You control the content, the sources, the volume, the pace, and your drink. Sometimes, it’s wrong, but it’s quickly corrected, and you should be more skeptical anyway. And if you want, you can participate. You’re not just watching.

This is also how I spent debate time: with Twitterrific open on my phone, looking back and forth between the TV and my phone. Because, frankly, my Twitter feed felt like I was sitting with friends making fun of the debates, like during the first debate when Romney tried to dismiss some study that conflicted with his stance on something, and then this came across my feed seconds afterwards:

And I LOL’d.

This Twitter dimension started becoming more prevalent to me when tv shows started adopting hashtags. Each news channel wanted you to use their tag, even the regional stations. It’s like Twitter has this invisible dimension where you can talk about the election, episodes of The Walking Dead, or farts.

What gives me pause is that having a twitter client open during historic events like a debate takes me OUT of the event. It can feel like it’s taking me out of the moment. It’s also so easy to set it up so that all you see are tweets that reinforce your own worldview, that never challenge your viewpoint, that never make you think about why you believe what you believe.

But then I think it’s just a debate, so loosen up.