Saturday, 30 January 2010

The one where the public made me feel like a blogging tweeting freak...

This week I led a Twitter workshop at a clients conference. The aim was simply to teach the basics of how to sign up, find some peeps to tweet with and then to let them loose.
I was prepared. I had slides and everything. 

They listened, asked sensible questions, asked not so sensible questions - but that was the point... right?

Then I lost them...

Someone asked how you can be sure that the people you are tweeting with aren't crazy axe murderers....

"Well...." I answered... "obviously there are a certain amount of nutters out there but I feel that personally I have found an amazing group of people, with whom I have become very good friends."


Then someone at the back piped up.... "What you have actually met them?"

"Oh, yes - lots of times, I 'speak' to them everyday and I had some of them come to stay over the holidays..."

Stoney silence...

I looked around and it was that point that I realised that the whole room thought that I was a total and utter freak.

The lesson to be learned here people is that the general population clearly pitch blogging and tweeting on the same scale as internet dating (not that there is anything wrong with that - before someone attacks me!).
Not surprisingly the workshop kind of wrapped itself up pretty quickly after that.

Was it me? Did I imagine their narrow minded response? 

I came away feeling a little odd. I questioned myself and my feelings but I'm confident that I've found a pretty amazing group of  friends online. Yes there are spats between bloggers - but we are all very opinionated and we do spend a lot of time talking to each other!

Have you had similar experiences when talking about your blogging or tweeting? 
Can you imagine what they would have said if I'd told them that all my buddies are turning into Blythe dolls? Straight jackets for sure!


  1. It is so true. Although I am only just getting to know all you great blogger mummies and daddies now. I have been chatting online in baby forums for about 7 years. I have made some truly fab friends and peopel I know I will rely on forever. I have met lots of them in real life and last year I travelled to B'ham and met 10 of them for the first time, shared a room with one and had a wonderful day and night out with the girls! We have had loads of trolls ont he boards in our time but you can usually tell the weirdos - can't you! Mich x

  2. It's funny, isn't it? I feel like I have made a few good friends on Twitter who might even be better friends than the REAL ones I have but I have never MET them. But then, going to BMB gatherings, I feel like I KNOW the people that I have never actually met. It's a funny world, Twitter and Blogging, that many people who DON'T, don't understand at all. My hubby is clueless! ;)

  3. In light of recent events in my home town (Heathfield) I've realised that it's actually just as easy to have real-life friends and acquaintances as axe-welding murderers, after all, who knows what goes on behind closed doors! I, too, have made some exceptional friends on baby forums and social networking sites over the years and without many of them I don't know how I would have coped.
    Yes you probably do need to be slightly more cautious online but then who's to say what your famile and friends are getting up to right now!
    Great post :)

  4. OK, I had a similar incident very recently so totally understand your blog!

    The thing is that if you are tweeting and blogging from a business perspective then the vast majority of people you are interacting with have websites, and also a presence other online forums. They may also be known to mutual business contacts.

    All of these things make them more 'credible' to you when you are interacting with them and thats where the relationship has a foot in the real world.

    I cant imagine for one minute that someone could create a business profile, website, and speak like they know what they are doing etc, whilst all they time they are sitting in a darkened room in their pajamas with 45 cats and the carcass of their Mother in the corner.

    Yeah I think that people will associate blogging and tweeting with online dating, its all 'virtual' isnt it? But in the world of business, people have to display some business knowledge before you create a connection with them and interaction with them.

    The other thng about Twitter is that you can see other business people creating connections with them and often discussing business topics.

    Maybe I'm wrong, and maybe the 450 odd that Im following are all one person who has created 450 profiles and personalites which interact with each other on different subjects, just to fool me into meeting him on some darkened country lane one night.

    But if thats the case then.... that means that you and this blog are all part of this big conspiracy!

    Which theory is more mad?

  5. It's really interesting. NONE of my mum friends are on twitter, or blog at all (they barely to remember to look at my blog, *sniff*). Like the song says, the twitter revolution will not be televised (or something similar)...

  6. Kelly,
    Pop over to Twitter and have a look at all the crazy Blythe avitar activity going on... we are starting to look slightly crazy for sure!

    Ahhh - welcome to the clan.....
    Sure that I was reading something about cliques a couple of weeks ago..Looks like we now have one of our own!!!

  7. Yes I noticed the twitter #Blythe mutation going on. Think we are both to blame for that one!

    I think it is senisble to be a little cautious with people online but it is slightly different if you have been reading omeone blog for a while because you get a gist of what they are like.

    I suppose I tweet more with the people I have met (and I have met you in fact at the Next Springtime event but you wouldn't have known it was me)because I know they 'get' my humour a bit more and I 'get' theirs, if you know what I mean.

    I tried to explain twitter and blogging to a non-blogger/tweeter the other day and she looked at me blankly as if I was both mad and speaking in a foreign language!!

  8. I met my husband online and although we weren't internet daters I would urge people to try it. Why? Because the internet enables us to connect with the people on our own wavelength no matter how far away they live. I may never have met the love of my life if I hadn't explored the online social world.

  9. Your post really made me giggle, I can just imagine how you felt when asked if you'd actually met them. None of my friends 'get' Twitter. I'm pleased in a way as it's enabled me to interact with new people and in a different way too. i'm much more confident on Twitter and my blog than I am in 'real' life.
    Last week I met a fellow blogger/tweeter....although I told my mother I was meeting someone through Twitter ( she would have been pleased at me getting out & doing something on my own) i told my friends I was meeting an old friend. They would have thought I was mad meeting someone because of Twitter. I think until you try it, you just can't understand it. @wildernesschic was brave because she met someone (me) a cartoon with lilac hair last week! ;0)

  10. I have made some great friends online and i don't think i could go through my day to day life without them. I've met some through BMB meet ups but even if i've not met them they still are real friends. We're modern women, we don't have to sit around drinking tea in our nieghbours lounge to show we have friends. They may think you're crazy but i think you're great xxxx

  11. I have to say, before I started blogging I did think that people who did it were norman no mates who couldn't find friends in the real world. Ahem. Look at me now. Only staying sane in my new life in Moscow because I can connect with all the other bloggers out there and be reminded of whom I REALLY am... So take no notice of them; they are the ones missing a trick!

  12. Not everyone is that savvy with the internet and open minded when it comes to meeting people online, then when you say you have have met people you linked with online, it must seem very strange.

  13. I have my bloggy friends, and my coffee friends. My coffee friends do not understand twitter AT ALL, though some of them are getting into facebook and really it's justa hop skip and
    a jump from there...

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  15. I started using Twitter last summer and think it works best if you are networking within a niche subject i.e. baking and food blogging in my case. I have now met about 20 of the people I tweet with and have got on with each of them incredibly well.

    None of my "real" friends use twitter and very few of them read my blog either. They all cry "How do you have the time?!" yet they all manage to send text messages and watch all the latest reality tv shows.

    I know far more about what is going on in the day to day lives of people I tweet with than a lot of my friends. I don't think it's sad, it's just a modern day equivalent of pen friends and nobody ever rubbished those.

  16. I find it easier to meet my bloggy / tweetie friends than I do to make friends at the classes that we go to. I am so shy in real life but you already have a relationship with these online people, so you always have something to talk about. I do think that if you don't blog and tweet it could all seem a little odd!

  17. I don't talk about it that much with my friends in real life and no-one at mother and toddler groups or any of the activities I go to mention ever mention they've got a blog or tweet. Maybe they're all secretly doing it. I love the power of the online world when it's harnessed for good. Seeing the messages pour in (over 1,000) for someone who recently gave birth after losing her second baby, the rallying for Haiti, it's all heart warming. I find it amazing that I can read about what someone is doing in Canada or LA on twitter in real time - when I'm feeling the same here.

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  19. Yes, I've had similar conversations about Twitter with people who didn't really get it. Not sure I really get it myself, but it's fun to use it!

    Love the idea of your new meme so will be back to participate next week!!

  20. I was guilty myself! A friend had to convince me to sign up to Twitter - I kept saying What's the point? I can always email you!

    Now I love it and love the updates from everyone. Forgive them, they know not what they say.

  21. Hi,

    Just so you know, I read your blog and I love it. I have given you a creative blogger award.


  22. I couldn't have done this last year without twitter and blogging - it literally saved my sanity and I have made lots of friends through it

    But I totally get that the majority of the population think I'm some kind of nutter

  23. Have replied on BMB too, I'm not stalking you!
    Am doing three Twitter workshops for a networking event at the end of March, so I'll be prepared for these types of questions, eek!
    Am wary of losing people but like you say, it's a way to meet a fantastic, supportive group of people - cynics - doubt us if you dare losers!!

  24. Oh my! I was outed this week on the school run as a blogger because a school Mum friend had seen me in Red, and I had bit of an astonished/negative response of 'well I don't have the time' from the other Mums. So I think I'll keep Twitter and my online friends a guilty secret.

    That said some of my closet friends I've met on the web and my best friend I met on a X-File board back in 1996! She lives in Miami and I live here, but I know for a fact she or I would be on a plane if the other one was needed.

    Considering the amount of people now using the internet, it's amazing they don't interact with it and other people more. But maybe we are just pioneers :)

  25. I only know ie have met one person that I am in touch with through blogging and tweeting. The few friends/family I have told about my secret addiction think I'm rather peculiar, but most I wouldn't even try and explain. Do I care ? Do I heck !


Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts. Appreciated as always. xx


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