Thursday, October 21, 2010

Twitter, Facebook, Blogs: Isn't the Internet Great??

These days, there are really 3 major means of social networking, and, if you're not using them all, you're likely missing something.  You may think whatever you're missing is no big deal, and it may not be a big deal to you at all, but, if you're going to be connected, you need to be using one of these networks, and probably all of them.

If you're reading this, you're already a reader of blogs and a fan of blogging.  Keep it up.  To make your blogging more productive, I suggest you look into using an RSS Reader, such as Google Reader.  RSS stands for Real Simple Syndication, and basically, since blogs are structured formats, with each post being date/time stamped, it means they can be sorted into a hierarchical format and displayed in a reader.  There are many RSS readers (one is included as part of Internet Explorer and in Outlook), but my favorite is Google's Reader.  I prefer it because it works within the browser, and the settings follow you to any computer you use.  All you need is a google account, which you already have if you're a gmail user, but it's easy to sign up and use all of google's products.  You also have one if you're a Picasa user (for sharing pictures).  Now, you may not agree with Google's founders politics (they're morons), but, their technology is great.  With an RSS Reader, you don't have to go to 400 websites to troll for news, you'll find it all aggregated, right there.  Try it.

The next thing you need to look into is Facebook.  Like AOL of old, Facebook is the destination site on the Internet for connecting with your old and new friends.  I use Facebook mostly for connecting with old friends and an occasional snarky post, but, mostly, I just try to see what people are up to.  For interest, I started myself to keep tabs on my kids.  A requirement of their use of it was that I had to be their friend, so I could see what they were up to.  It's expanded somewhat.  If you join Facebook, you'll be able to connect with me, but, you'll be surprised with all the groups that exist there, how quickly people you knew from your past will find you.  I don't use Facebook that much for politics, but, it can be used for that as well.

Finally, there is Twitter.  I love Twitter.  The kids are not in to Twitter.  That makes it more appealing to me.  Basically, I described it to the youngest as "Facebook without the fluff, and you have to learn to speak in 140 words or less."  With the increasing use of URL shorteners like, though, Twitter is a way to quickly link people to articles of interest, and to stay even more connected to anyone.  Because it's near instantaneous, you can sometimes engage in short conversations with people who you would normally not have anything to do with, like the Braves AJC beat writer, or CBS's White House correspondent.  It's like having a real time feed of your RSS Reader.  In fact, that's really what I do online - watch my Twitter feed and scroll through my RSS reader for interesting stuff.  Most bloggers these days link their blogs to their Twitter feed, so, once they post something, if you're following them on Twitter, you'll see it, with a link.  In fact, this post, once posted, will show up in my Twitter feed - the title, with a link.

So, I encourage you all to create twitter accounts and then follow some people you find interesting.  Here are some recommendations:

  • HumanEvents - Get a twitter feed of Human Events articles
  • rsmccain -Robert Stacy McCain
  • BigJournalism - Breitbart's Big Journalism site
  • DanRiehl - conservative blogger
  • RichLowry
  • ByronYork
  • AoSHQ -Ace Of Spades
  • politico 
  • krauthammer
  • ajcbraves - Dave O'Brien, Braves beat reporter
  • ESPN_ACC - Heather Dinich - covers the ACC for ESPN
  • RedState - a feed of Red State's home page posts
  • NROcorner - A feed of NR's Corner posts
  • greggutfeld - Come on, you don't know who Greg Gutfeld is?  You should.
  • ThadMcCotter - Michigan congressman, and rock music lover
  • Buster_ESPN -Buster Olney, ESPN baseball reporter
  • SarahPalinUSA
  • newsbusters - twitter feed of newsbusters blog posts
  • LegInsurrection - twitter feed of LI's blog
  • sistertoldjah - she's an NC based conservative blogger.  Prolific
  • jaketapper - ABC's WH correspondent
  • gatewaypundit - Jim Hoft's twitter account
  • KarlRove
Those are just a few.

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