There. I’ve said it. I’m the little kid in the crowd who dares to point out what we all secretly knew. I, like millions of others, have signed up to twitter because I felt I should. With all this hype how can I afford not to jump on the next bandwagon. Now I admit that Twitter is great if:
- You want to get spammed endlessly by marketers
- Need to know what Stephen Fry had for breakfast
- Think that anyone else cares what you had for breakfast
Rail Alerts on Twitter. Why?
But last week I heard of a new low for twitter bandwagon jumping. Apparently we can now sign up to various train services to pick up a twitter feed of train problems. OK, sounds great in theory. And you know just how this came about. A group of suits who don’t quite understand social media were sat round a table thinking gosh we just have to be on this twitter thing else we will be left behind. No one will get on our trains any more.
So now, when you need to know the train times, rather than using a centralised site such as www.nationalrail.co.uk which has all the possible information you need, or the train company’s own site to look up departure times, platform information, real time problems etc, we can log on to twitter and hope that they happened to have put up the info that we need. If we are really lucky we can avoid the carefully constructed interface of the National Rail site and hope that Twitter Search will throw up the the answer we need.
The Right Tool for the Job
I don’t get it. Time and time again I see companies trying to use Twitter to do what can be done much better on a website or through RSS. Why? Because they think it is something they should be doing.
Well I’ve called it first (OK, OK, not quite first – other’s have blogged it but to be fair I’ve been thinking it since day 1! ;)). Twitter is the Emperor’s New Clothes.