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Sacha Van Straten

Does it really matter whether the press legitimise a new technology or not? And is it relevant if a celebrity is using an online service?

The fact that thousands are using Twitter, and doing so in ways that are meaningful to them, surely is the proof that for many people press endorsement is an irrelevance.

That said, I found reading Will Carling's acerbic comments during yesterday's England/Ireland rugby match far more entertaining than anything the official BBC commentators had to say.



Phil Greaney

I'm glad you've written on this - and there's a real flavour of the democracy of tech tools about your post. This is really great - I agree completely. I think some celebs make more effort than others - than I make clear in my post about celeb tweeting here http://greaneynet.com/blogs/?p=13 - but others consider it just another broadcast medium for flogging their product.

It isn't.

It reminds me of how we (some of us at least) consider these kinds of social networking tools to represent a world as how we might like it to be rather than how it is.


AJ Cann

I think the publicity was inevitable, it's up to us now as educators how we manage the influx. I'm reminded of ze frank's long running joke on The Show, "Have the noobs gone yet?".

Stephen Downes

> YOU legitimise technology. Celebrities and business are a side-show.

WE know this. The traditional media doesn't. Which is why the companies that produce newspapers and television channels are failing, one after another.

Sue Waters

Same thing is also happening here in Australia. Lately it has felt like every news, newspaper or radio whenever I turn them on or pick them up is talking about twitter. Like you I also feel the frustration that 'celebrity' use has made people pay attention.

Sad to say many friends who use twitter enjoy following celebrities. Maybe it is no different from reading gossip columns but instead you are getting it first hand? Not for me!

AJ Cann

@Sue Depends on the celeb. Some do respond to selected messages, others just use Twitter as a broadcast channel.

Sue Waters

@AJ Just clarifying - what you are saying is there is a slight distinction between celebrities and gossip magazines because they might actually answer you back?

If so, yes have to agree that is probably the case - where else other than blogs would the normal person has an opportunity to interact with a celebrity?

Ultimately I suppose it gets back to why you use Twitter. I'm interested in the conversation aspect. Which is why I choose not to follow celebrities just as I choose not to follow some of the well known edubloggers.

AJ Cann

@Sue - some celebs on Twitter are real people, i.e. you can talk to them (within the constraints of 249,000 other followers) whereas other as mere PR bots.
See also David Silver on thin and thick tweets: http://silverinsf.blogspot.com/2009/02/difference-between-thin-and-thick.html

Harriet Wakelam

Oh, but there's nothing like a bit of celebrity gossip and the opportunity of a moment of fame to make people feel special..

Who knows, maybe it'll even help reduce the cult of celebrity we've been suffering under!

Will Reader

I follow Stephen Fry (but NOT Jonathan Ross FFS) and find his tweets to be surprisingly dull. Guess I'm more interested in people's ideas than their lives. Hence the tweets I prefer are those whose value is unrelated to the person who sent them (links, jokes, *interesting* experiences). Of course tweets by friends may only be interesting by virtue of your knowing the person. Which kinda makes friends like celebrities (or more correctly, vice versa)

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