Disruptive technologies bring about changes in processes, lifestyles and add a whole array of new terms, definitions and verbs. Its wise to start with a few definitions -:

Twitter: A web based social networking platform built fundamentally on status updates/micro blogging of members.

Tweet: A status update/post on Twitter consisting of 140 characters and usually a response to the base question “What are you doing?”

Twittersphere: Global set of all Twitter enabled applications that utilise tweets as core ingredients of the functionality. This includes the Twitter web application and 3rd party applications built on top of it. Basically all tweets form the twittersphere.

Twitterprise: A subset of the twittersphere whereby an element of risk taking/entrepreneurship is undertaken for commercial gain. Again this could include 3rd party applications riding on tweets in their business model or some sort commercial ventures embedded into the Twitter web based application.

Tweetspeak: An evolved communication convention finding its way into the foray of microblogging e.g. ‘@user’ used to denote a reference to a particular person or ‘#category’ used to describe information i.e metadata.

In a nutshell Twitter is a little over 3yrs old and is the fastest growing web based social network. In terms of user base it is still an infant compared to the likes of MySpace, Bebo and Facebook, in terms of potential, it ranks very high on usability, probably higher than any of its competitors. However their biggest setback is the lack of a clear cut business model. The company is yet to break even! That need not be worrisome as Twitter as it stands today is a tad bit too big to go down unless some drastic mistakes are committed. There are enormous opportunities tying up with other companies and their networks or staking out a claim for themselves on a solo run. The biggest task on their sleeves is maintaining the buzz about the tweets.

The craze about Twitter is the instant responses to tweets from one’s immediate connections and the general population of Twitter depending on privacy settings. So on one side of the coin Twitter is mundane microblogging service where users can update the most inconsequential and irrelevant aspects of their lives, however on the other side of the coin, Twitter is a powerful, dynamic and extremely useful information system that can be positively utilised to spur information advantage.


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