|I’m not one of those people that always has to be right. I can easily admit when I am wrong (don’t tell my husband) and in fact, have even conceded an argument just to end it. Because, ultimately, does it really matter whose turn it was to do the dishes? Or that the wall color you picked out was actually burnt sienna and NOT red. So while it may not be difficult for me admit I was wrong (at least to all of you), it is, in this case, surprising.
Last year I had the privilege of partaking in an online educational technology certificate course. As an assignment for the course we were tasked with creating a Twitter account and worse…we had to actually use it. Let me make this perfectly clear….I HATED this assignment! I had avoided the Twitterverse like the plague. Not a plague, but “THE” plague. I couldn’t understand why anyone used this technology or how it came to be so revered. I was so adamantly against it that I even wrote a blog detailing all the ways I thought Twitter was the devil incarnate. You can click here to read that post. In retrospect, it may not be considered scathing and the writing seems questionable at best, but it still got the point across. I think.
Recently, though, something magnificent happened. I have been made into a believer. A reformer. A user. Dare I say, a tweeter. It all happened at a magical place called EdJEWcon. A place where Jewish educators from all across the United Staes and Canada met for 3 days of learning, teaching and inspiration. It was there, in sunny Jacksonville, FL that I saw the light. Or rather, I saw the “hashtag”. I saw it for what it was and what it could be and I embraced the power of the tweet. It was there that I saw Twitter as a professional tool instead of a personal play-by-play for my life.
Through Twitter, I have connected with incredible people with invaluable resources. These people have many more followers and much better insight than I and they can now lend their collective voices to mine. With the tap of a button, or in this case, 140, I can reach thousands of like-minded professionals and educators with the same passions, interests, fears and questions. Not sure how to teach a lesson…tweet about it. Looking for a good resource to share with colleagues…tweet about it. Gonna be in the area and need a place to stay…tweet about it. There is no question too silly and no comment to inane to share with the Twitterverse. Well, actually there is. Hence, my first blog about twitter.
And don’t forget the power of the hashtag… Formerly known as the number sign. This is how you know what everyone else is tweeting about. Unfortunately for me, the things that are usually “trending” are ridiculously superficial and irrelevant. But, all of that is just background noise and a necessary evil in this virtual world. If you can manage to get past all of that and not “follow” the people that care what Justin Bieber is doing, the Twitterverse is a great place to be.
So while I will not admit this to my husband, I will admit it to you. I was wrong. About Twitter I mean. Don’t be scared off by the ridiculous and inane. Don’t allow your opinion to be skewed by tweets about Ashton Kutcher and Dancing With the Stars. Whatever you’re looking for, chances are someone else is wondering about it too. And, oh yeah, there’s a hash tag for that.