Twitter is an intriguing beast. It is one of the two dominant social networks found on today’s internet, and at its simplest, offers one the ability to broadcast one’s thoughts to other people. Admittedly anywhere on the internet is now wont to do this, however, twitter’s defining trait lies in its limit of 140 characters per post. One could perhaps argue it a social network centred about brevity.
Having such a limitation, presumably it can be dismissed? Not worthy of one’s attention?
Whilst the majority of Twitter could be considered pointless babble, as a platform, it has nevertheless proved an influential medium. Having numerous links to the Arab Spring, for example.
Again, one could argue the internet as a whole, capable of similar, and I would agree. However, twitter’s ‘follower’ format has a certain openness about it that one finds difficult to ignore. Coupled with the seemingly instantaneous means of posting ideas, opinions, and yes, inane babble, in a fluid and concise manner gives the service a degree of attractiveness and influence.
For what reason then, am I blithering on about Twitter?
Ah yes, my point. My reason for writing this is relatively simple, and is centred on a simple question:
How has Twitter changed the ani-sphere and its denizens?
The ani-sphere, which I choose to define as the loose area of the internet primarily concerned with Japanese animation; consisting of a number of blogs, forums, translators, news sites, and irc channels; follows a relatively standard approach across its many genres. When a new episode is released, through murky channels or otherwise, people watch it; then some rush to comment on it; whilst others comment on those comments, and so on. These comments themselves, take a variety of shapes, from philosophical rambles to curious combinations of concatenated consonants.
Now, has Twitter changed this?
No, not particularly; it’s a formula that works, after all.
What exactly has Twitter done, then?
I posit that Twitter has increased interaction within the ani-sphere.
The ani-sphere, as I have come to understand it, is not a single community, but rather a loose coalition of warring genres. Whilst each follow approximately the same methodology, and speak the same language; they are interested in slightly different programs, topics, and ideas. Today, blogs, perhaps more so than forums, allow one to offer a stream of thoughts on one’s chosen subject. If successful, one can achieve a reasonably sized audience to which one may preach; some of whom, may comment on, or discuss matters further.
But there exists a plethora of blogs, and so competition for readership and influence is inevitable. Blogs and their authors which find themselves similarly aligned, or within the same clique, might follow their comrades and competitors both. Following this, and being the proactive, extroverted kind of chaps that bloggers tend to be, I think it not implausible to suggest it likely that they will end up commenting on each other’s blogs. Indeed, this does appear to happen.
Again, where does Twitter come in?
Twitter, I should like to suggest, is a similar, but less formal, affair. It too, is a stream of consciousness, and as such one is able to tweet whatever one so wishes. It is eminently possible, therefore, for one to offer short and quickly realised commentary on a series or topic. This might be of a serious vein; alternatively, it may tend towards irreverence. Yet with this reduction of formality, one finds a greater sense of interaction between users possible; from a quick bout of banter between friends, to conversations mimicking those found in comments and forums of old. Coupled with that of the open ‘follower’ style, where one may select whom they wish to follow at the click of a button, and indeed unfollow with the same ease; the high walls separating the various communities within the ani-sphere suddenly begin to find their foundations much looser than before.
Through connections on Twitter, one need not necessarily read others’ extended treatise found on their respective blogs; nor is it impossible that one might find new blogs of interest amongst the ‘Twitter-sphere’. With an increased degree of informal communications between bloggers, commenters, and the occasional ‘lurker’ thrown in for good measure, we begin to see an increased level of communication and collaboration.
Not only this, but over the past few months, perhaps one has noticed an increase in the number of guest posts? An increase in duets, or as is apparently le mot du jour; colloquia?
Thus far, we have found that Twitter has assisted in furthering collaborative commentary; a pooling of ideas; and a certain degree of advertisement for one’s own internet abode. Yet, what of the central activity that ties the ani-sphere together? That of actually watching anime: has Twitter influenced this in anyway?
Here I introduce The Standing Committee for the Coordination of Simultaneous Anime Viewing; a collection of, primarily, bloggers from Twitter who come together to watch anime. Born of a suggestion from Twitter, and making use of Skype, the SCCSAV, as it is more laconically known, has grown to include a sizeable number of people; each with their own tastes, philosophies, and styles; inviting commentary and discussion on the programs they chose to watch with it. In effect, this has helped to provide a bridge, upon which even the more discrete communities may meet.
Can we consider Twitter to be an influential force within the ani-sphere?
With the above points alone, I would argue one can.
There are, however, other questions whose answers may contribute. The first, and perhaps most apparent, being: why Twitter? One might ask as to the affect Twitter has had on the influence of individuals within the ani-sphere. Further still, one may ask whether this is limited solely to the ani-sphere, or whether it common within other areas of interest: music, film, or sport, for example.
Twitter appears to have made the ani-sphere a more collaborative and social place, yet it is apparent we have only just scratched the surface of why this is: there is much yet to explore.
25 responses to “The Ani-sphere All Atwitter”
I think to look at the effects one would need to inspect the timeline of the anisphere’s tango with Twitter. First back to late ’07/early ’08, when many of the anibloggers of the period began using the platform, through to 2009, where it the platform itself was booming with grown and took the anisphere along with it. Hype, I think is the best term, and we are slowly seeing the hype die. Users are becoming more collected and putting the platform to use without it being something mystical or religious. And truthfully, it is becoming more concise and scrutinized with consideration for blogging.
I believe there was a cheapening to blogs at one point, and I have written of it before, where the satisfaction of blurting nonsense across a mass of users was enough to prohibit thoughtful entries. I feel bloggers now question, or move in the direction of asking, “is this something I can write about, should I save these thoughts for a post, would this be a good conversation piece external to Twitter, or is it fitting to be short-text back and forth?” If that seems obvious, I will tell you, there was a time such questioning was vacant, and I feel a number of posts were never rendered due to the engrossing nature of the platform.
Beyond this, you are absolutely correct in that Twitter has raised the level of interaction between bloggers, though I am positive the closed quarters of IRC still provide more intimacy (#animeblogger since 2006). But, Twitter provides broader interaction. We encounter more [virtual] people, more personalities, and more shared interest groups, but now there is a personal level to it. This is different.
There was a time when anime bloggers didn’t roam into “who we really are” (supposedly) offline. Some bloggers, such as Wabisabi, Anipages Ben, Aroduc, and Author still maintain a distinction; one cannot simply observe them and discover the same level of things about their real lives as you can for many bloggers on Tw. There is an impermeable force to maintain order; some people’s lives are over-extended socially and professionally, that a flood of virtual relationships is too trivial to consider. In a sense, it is similar to how coworkers limit their personal life with other employees… this is beneficial.
I may seem very negative towards the personal level of play on Twitter, but I assure there is a misnomer. I do not taking issue with playing personally, but how quickly it all occurs, and perhaps how it can instantaneously be mistaken for something deep. I have a few very close friends I met online (this was before social network booms, and anime blogging), but the understanding between us was not forged in a few tweets, days, or weeks. Time. It took years of communication, instant messaging, emails, voice calls, and finally meeting to build these relationships.
Twitterships surge and flow with a giddiness, and it’s fun, but should be considered with maturity and social proficiency. My perspective is that if the anisphere wishes to run with personal relationships, we should slow down, and really consider, as adults, what these virtual skinships are or more importantly, are not. Because these relationships do have the capacity to become lifelong bonds with intimate understanding, but it does not happen overnight, or even in a [virtual] year.
With that in mind, what I see is not as severe as I make it out to be. We are quite casual and merely must remember first, our own lives (identity tying us to reality) and then how we arrived (what [interest] brought us here). If we can manage that, I believe the virtual world can be all the more real and meaningful.
If it isn’t clear why I’ve ranted lightly on personal vs professional, it’s because I believe there is no requirement for personal relationships to collaborate effectively. Professional bonding also has merit. And ultimately, I feel the personal attention (esp. from a group who is more-or-less socially deprived) tends to wear on professional potential, the potential to create. Just a thought coming from someone who has watched the Internet for many years and has spent greater amounts of time observing reality.
Finally, I should clarify that bonds can be made with impersonal folks, like those mentioned, but the most crucial factor is time. Virtual time, in my opinion, is much slower and detached than physical time.
I thank you for your most interesting response, I only hope I can do it justice.
Regarding the ‘consideration for blogging’ and the conscious delimiting of one’s blog and one’s Twitter account, I can only say that I agree. As I have mentioned in my reply to Hana below: that such a separation allows blogging to be held ‘aloft’, and that this is a good thing. Hopefully this will allow blogging to evolve and move forward.
I also find myself in agreement with your points on IRC; a table for two is much more intimate that a table for twelve after all. Perhaps Skype will become another area where deeper relationships may be formed.
What I do find fascinating is your understanding of the interplay between professionalism at how personal one is willing to go. It is self-evident that we each have a collection of personae, of masks if you will, which we use according to the situation and company we happen to be keeping at any one time. I believe this to be no different on the internet, previously we have seen the rise of the anonymous who is not necessarily there to get much out of the internet other than the thrill of being rude and getting away with it. Now that we are all spending so much time on, or interacting with, the internet, we find the rise of an internet persona, often unified across services to ensure one knows who one is across the breadth of a community. I believe this to hold greater subtlety, however; that we have another set of personae to show in different areas of the internet.
I would argue this falls under the question of ‘why Twitter?’ Unlike Facebook or Google+ one is able to remain anonymous to one’s desired extent. This presumably depends on one’s general personality and position, the community to which one belongs, and who will eventually be one’s ‘followers’. If, for example, one is followed by mainly people known in real life, then one’s persona will be much more similar to one’s offline representations of oneself than someone within our little area of the internet. Let’s not discount, however, the possibility of both being slightly more polished than who we really are in the flesh.
I would suspect that a number of people within the ani-sphere see Twitter, along with the rest of this little corner, as an escape. One does not need to be who they are offline; one is able to loosen one’s sensibilities slightly. One is able to indulge in a subject which is often frowned upon; hence the use of the pseudonym. Yet, as you have mentioned, some are being much more open with regard to who we are offline or elsewhere. The usage of real names is perhaps the lightest of examples. Some are lifting the mask of anonymity ever so slightly.
If one were to replace anonymity, or perhaps more pertinently, the semi-anonymity now seemingly so enamoured, with one’s professional persona I feel there to be a certain degree of similarity between them. As a professional approach does not, in any way, inhibit one’s ability to collaborate, then yes I would agree with your statement that we do not necessarily need to know each other intimately. I would, however, suggest that one is still sociable to a certain degree when being professional, that it is an inseparable part of collaboration. The difference between the two being the topic of conversation and subject of collaboration, rather than that which is more closer to home.
To respond to your suggestion that, if one were to become too personal with each other, there is a possibility that it would limit creativity: I hesitate to agree with you here. Whilst I would agree it possible, it is my own humble opinion, that this is very dependent on the person himself. Some prefer a greater degree of interpersonal separation, whereas others shine when they work with people they love or are closest to. I should also like to point out that our little area of the internet is mainly reactive. Some produce fanart, some fanfiction, others apparently even produce Visual Novels, but these are built upon or inspired by ideas and works already made. Yet more specifically still, the blogs that populate this area of the internet, focus on episodes and series and the analysis thereof. Creativity is needed to a certain degree, yes, but much of the creative legwork has already been completed.
Arriving at the idea of time, I find this interesting. Certainly interacting with others in the flesh requires a sense of immediacy, and that a conversation over the internet may be sporadic and last for several days. In this sense I agree with you, but surely ‘virtual time’ can be just as immediate as ‘offline time’, through IRC or IM for example. These, like the telephone or letter writing before them, present a certain distance between participants, and it is possible for one to slow one’s time with them. With the telephone and with the internet, however, one can respond as quickly as one notices a reply, one can still speak of the same subjects as one does with someone offline. Of course, this does not mean that ‘virtual time’ is always as quick as offline meetings, it often isn’t, but it has the potential to be so. It also does not mean that ‘virtual time’ should be considered better than ‘offline time’, merely appreciated as a different flavour. Whether, as you have pointed out, moving at such speed is a good idea is a different matter entirely.
Thank you, again, for reading and your thoughtful response. I am lucky to have had it as my very first comment at this blogging lark.
Lovely. Regarding the evolution of blogging, I think it has. Twitter is complementary in a sense of ‘conversation’ much like an entry’s discussion thread. That is now, and now is good. Bloggers who do not lose themselves in Twitter and still understand the value of more comprehensive ideas on a blog are poised to advantage most from Twitter, because it is complementary (or secondary).
Perhaps Skype will become another area where deeper relationships may be formed.
Possibly, although IRC was attacked for it’s insularity, even though anyone can join channels where anibloggers are chatting, and Skype is far worse in that you cannot join chats in the same way. But, I would consider it ‘personal’ interaction, something which requires attention (and easily receives it, perhaps at cost).
As for everything else, I think there are a few areas I should clarify. The issue of personal vs profession isn’t a matter of being too familiar, but personal interaction as a distraction. In a professional environment, or any sort of productive environment, mature contributors assess the information they disclose and maintain relationships at a semi-personal distance. If the indulgence of personal topics was primary, would productivity suffer? In most cases, horsing around will not facilitate work or accomplishment. So when I mentioned too much personal interaction, it was that those who are deprived of a social reality are easily pulled into a world where personal play undermines other, more productive activities, like blogging or collaboration. This isn’t meant to blame but highlight the absence of experience and/or discipline. To consider an example, SCCSAV is notorious for taking forever to “start watching” and the culprit is usually banter. Two people intent on collaborating but end up discussing mundane personal topics for hours, and have no writing or collaboration to show at the end, would be another example.
Twitter, as a social platform, has great power to disturb any sort of productive process (this can also be seen outside of blogging). The depth of relationships, and I use the term depth loosely, is less consequential. It is a matter of self-discipline, or regard for blogging, with respect to horse play. A good measure can often be seen between professionals as friends, when one interviews the other, such as in Interview Mag. Sometimes the interviews will stray into one-on-one personal banter, but it quickly resolves and remains collected. I have personally noticed when I opt-out of twitter for periods, I am able to watch and write with more focus than if I am trying to converse in every little conversation among bloggers. So, I cannot say personal interaction should be absent, but I prefer to save attention for myself and select people/tweets/conversations.
As for virtual time, I simply meant that knowing someone online for a year, does not exactly match knowing someone in-person. I feel we learn much more about people through in-person actions and reality. To give an example, I met someone online before I started blogging and we happened to chat and skype often, late into nights sometimes. It became a habit, and we casually became more personally aware of each other (to an extent). Three years later I happened to meet her in-person, and stayed at her house for a couple weeks. Despite “knowing” her for some time, those two weeks in-person nearly trivialized the previous three years. I realized that every time I thought I “knew her” online, what I meant was that I “knew of or about her.” I didn’t know her until I started to see her somewhere other than that “one place” (online). I should note that this was friendly, with attraction, but not romantic; *cough self-discipline.
And this touches on faces. Again you are completely correct in that people have faces for all occasions. There is one arguable perspective I have in that, if someone’s face never manifests in reality, then it is nothing more than imaginary, a facade. That is not to say it is valueless, but it’s value is retained in the sub-reality of the Internet, or perhaps consciousness. The more interesting thing about faces touches on why in-person time has a greater intensity. It relates to faces and context. As you said, we have faces, and I believe they relate heavily to actions in reality. To have a greater knowledge of someone is to have observed and understood faces within a variety of context. The way a persona acts at the movies, or around family, when shopping, in the grocery store, while cooking, showering, while nested in a slumber, suffering a hangover, riding the train, driving in traffic, or while online. It is impossible to enumerate every face for every context, but I feel what’s more important is to realize that “someone online” is one of infinite faces. To deepen our understanding of someone, we have to experience them in variety, outside the confines of a desk and computer, chat box and microphone. Else, I fear, when we say we “know someone,” we really mean, “we know of them.”
Hopefully that clarifies my stance. I feel everything I’ve said is quite redundant and obvious, and sad. People are beautiful and complex, and meant to be experienced… or so I believe.
Firstly I feel I must apologise for misunderstanding some of the points you made.
Regarding ‘horsing around’ and facilitating work or accomplishment, I certainly agree with your stance on this. If I may, I would choose to extend this to personal relationships as well. I should like to suggest that even with one’s closest friends, one does not reveal everything about oneself. Whilst more intimate aspects of one’s life are certainly shared to a greater extent but, being separate beings with our own agendas, we do not force every aspect of our lives onto another. As you have mentioned, self-discipline is most important here.
Twitter, as a social platform, has great power to disturb any sort of productive process…
A tiding of magpies spring to mind for some reason. As well as outside of blogging, and indeed, outside of Twitter, there are many things there to distract us; from a song on the radio, through an ill timed phone call or text, to those last few chapters of one’s book. Thus, as you and several others have found, a break is welcome from anything – including, of course, Twitter and the ‘blogosphere’.
Concerning your clarification on virtual time and of personae, I find myself unable to offer any comment other than one in agreement. Yet I found this spoke to me:
Else, I fear, when we say we “know someone,” we really mean, “we know of them.”
A most interesting point and observation, it makes me wonder as to the number of people we (or perhaps more pertinently/honestly I) know of in person, as opposed to actually knowing them. I dare say this could be the ‘default’ stance both on- and offline.
I feel everything I’ve said is quite redundant and obvious, and sad.
Perhaps such things are only redundant and obvious when they have been brought out into the light for all to see and ponder; of course, even redundancy and obviousness do not necessarily trivialise such things. In my humble opinion, some of the most simplistic things are beautiful because of their very simplicity. I would argue people, whilst mostly complex creatures, can also be quite simple at times.
Thank you again, for your thoughts, I found them most interesting… even if I did grab the wrong end of the stick at first, for which I can only apologise.
Twitter does what we need it do, mainly:
1. Interact with people who have similar interests, while retaining your anonymity (for the most part).
2. Easy to use and reach out to the huge userbase.
3. Expand your online persona, along with your blog.
4. Instant messaging, without the hassle of having to reply instantly.
5. Emphasizes that less is more so that we can try sounding witty without a meme-filled signature or a flashing GIF avatar.
You’ve raised a couple of points which interest me very much, and should like to be able to explore further at a later date.
Particularly one’s ‘online persona’: yet another mask amongst the many we wield daily. Following on from this, I’m also becoming quite fond of the idea that having a single online persona is becoming antiquated. Especially when one considers how much time we spend online, the reasons behind this, and the number of social networks available, each with their own raison d’être and niche. My full thoughts on this are not fully formed yet, however.
Many thanks for taking the time to read and comment.
In 2008 I’d have written a response post to this. Now I’m just going to tweet… something semi-related LOL
*chuckles* Ah, I missed a trick here, perhaps I should have tweeted the entire post instead.
But anyway, thank you for your comment. Much appreciated.
If Twitter does in fact lead to more/better posts, great, but more often than not I see bloggers using Twitter as an excuse not to blog.
Perhaps if they were only now contemplating whether they wish to blog, they would not choose to do so? If a blogger sees Twitter as an excuse not to blog, then is it not possible that they prefer Twitter over blogging as a medium? Yet as Kuro suggests below, there are still a number of people willing to stand up and choose to blog — either to begin, or indeed, to continue. I should like to suggest it possible that Twitter is acting as a sieve of sorts: allowing those who would like to express opinion easily, quickly, and in a similar manner to blogging, but without the necessity of building and maintaining an estate on the internet. I seem to recall Twitter described as a ‘micro-blogging’ site, after all.
Thank you for your comment, looking at Twitter as a distraction in this context is something I overlooked.
With the advent of Twitter, I’ve seen new aniblogs come alive every now and then. I propose that Twitter has helped grow the aniblogosphere through interactions as aspiring anibloggers were able to chat with the anibloggers, on Twitter, on a very calm and relaxed atmosphere, and in due time these aspiring bloggers start their own aniblogs, seeing that the aniblogosphere is not the “elite” group of anime fans that some people tend to muse about.
Just throwing my 2 cents into the topic.
A most welcome ‘2 cents’, I find your proposal of growth intriguing.
The number of bloggers generally appears to grow alongside the wax and wane of popularity of anime itself. Coupled with the cycle of blogs, a healthy degree of natural growth can be expected from time to time. Yet, the idea that interactions on twitter are promoting individuals to blog is tempting.
Unlike forums and irc channels, Twitter could be considered complimentary in nature. One does not necessarily broadcast complex arguments and ideas due to its limitations and ephemerality; albeit, it is certainly possible to have interesting and thoughtful conversations. Perhaps a blog is a natural extension to Twitter; a natural place of expansion. Alongside this we have the interaction between ‘lurkers’, ‘commenters’, and the authors themselves, possibly acting as a kind of catalyst, which you mentioned.
Whilst I am wholly in agreement that there is a degree of social stratification within the community, and the community of bloggers themselves, I would not necessarily argue that the distances between each echelon has been reduced to triviality. One can still feel the weight of certain members more so than others.
Of course, the concept of ‘elite anime fans’ is an amusing thing to ponder on, in and of itself. What exactly makes an anime fan ‘elite’? The amount of time one spends watching anime? The amount of thought one puts into understanding the more obscure, arthouse series? Or simply the amount of money one puts into one’s interest? Rather, one could perhaps argue that it is a disillusionment of the concept of an ‘elite’ anime fan; the discovery, that such a thing is an illusion. I could, of course, be barking up the wrong tree entirely but I, myself, would probably agree more with this; leading to the thought that, ‘I can do it too’ which, in turn, leads to an increase in growth of the ‘aniblogosphere’.
Following from this, one could then possibly question the nature, motives, and reasons behind the three concepts and labels, ‘lurker’, ‘commenter’, and ‘blogger’. I thank you for the food for thought, it is very much appreciated.
As with any form of social media, Twitter is what you make of it. As you say, within the anibloggersphere, it has led to greater interaction, which has led to more cross-pollination of ideas, which has in turn led to more collaborative and guest posts. Ryan and TRazor’s comments give both an overview of how Twitter usage has developed over the past few years and also provide perspectives on how it can be used in personal and practical ways, whereas Ghosty and Baka-san highlight how some users can end up using it more and blogging less. All are very pertinent perspectives that probably cover the main developments and trends behind recent to current Twitter usage, so I’ll just some observations of my own.
Having joined Twitter about 15 months ago because the Twitter plugin on our blog (used to announce posts from the blog’s Twitter account) wasn’t working lol, I ended up staying (setting up my own account) because I wanted to make friends with more anime folks and to be able to interact with them outside of blog comments. In my case, this also coincided with the birth and development to date of the SCCSAV. Like several bloggers no doubt, I basically went from being just an aniblogger and commenter, to being someone who ended up conversing more about anime (via Twitter) and wanting to blog less (because I’d already felt like I’d spent so much time talking about it, that the thought of writing about it sometimes felt repetitive and stale). Thus, I can totally understand how Twitter can be used as an ‘excuse’ not to blog, and it certainly made me less likely to visit others’ blogs and leave comments on their posts for a while, thinking that I already knew their thoughts anyway, etc. However, thankfully, I managed to continue blogging fairly reguarly (it helps having a team blog, I guess), and in fact wanting to write more joint-posts and editorials in addition to my epi-blogging. And making use of Readers to help me keep up with my favuorite blogs in a more systematic way, as opposed to the manual checking that I’d been doing, only until very recently, in fact.
In short: my interest in Twitter waxes and wanes, but I find it an invaluable resource for both friendly informal intereaction, and for inspiration and being a springboard for testing out new ideas for posts. And for coming across interesting new posts and users. ;)
Thanks for the read!
Thank you. Admittedly, I’m not entirely certain how I can add anything to your wonderfully comprehensive response. ^_^’
‘Twitter is what you make of it.’ I must confess to being quite taken with this; in someways it reminds me of the questions about the point of Twitter. I rather suppose that this flexibility is its charm at the end of the day.
Regarding Twitter as an ‘excuse’ to not blog, perhaps it is down to this as well? How each person uses it affects the delimitation between the two: if one feels a tweet to hold as much weight as an ‘episodic’, for example, then a reduction of ‘epi-blogging’ is almost inevitable. Perhaps it appropriate to suggest that Twitter has helped blogging ensure it maintains a sense of weight, of depth, of influence; akin to the steady popularity of hardbound books in the face of e-books and e-readers. I believe Ryan touches on this as well.
Again, many thanks for your response. I can only hope that my post was sufficiently interesting enough…
twitter allows me to connect with my readers and fellow anibloggers. Despite that it can become a distraction and excuse not to blog, it also has provide me numerous ideas for posts. It also allowed us anime fans to exchange opinions on the spot regarding certain episodes/shows. It’s refreshing.
I’m beginning to see a pattern here, in that Twitter is a distraction and inspiration both. That one must hold one’s tweeting and blogging in balance lest the latter be forgotten. New ideas for posts spring forth from it, but it can also act as a means of distraction. But for Twitter to be called ‘refreshing’? That is new for me. If I may, I find an interesting choice of word in that it is almost pondering the longevity of Twitter as a springboard for ideas; as a platform for conversation.
Thank you for the reading and commenting, ’tis much appreciated.
I know I’m late to the party here, but I just wanted to second this comment, because it’s become true of me in the past couple of months. In my recent efforts to plug back into the ‘sphere I have found that my rapidly tweeted observations—as well as the tweets of others—have become ideas. Then I often work out slightly more detailed ideas in comments left on other blogs, which then grows into a larger post on the blog.
If Twitter has replaced anything, it’s the need to blog episodically. I’ve never been good at episodic blogging, though I’ve tried many times in the past history of Anime Diet, because I usually ran out of things to say after a few eps. I’m a big picture guy and enjoy ruminating on a show’s larger themes, which are more suited to well-considered essays.
It’s funny because Twitter started, for me, as a way to report on conventions live and on the ground. It still is, come con season, but it’s now the real social lifeblood of the ‘sphere. I love it.
As I understand it one can never be (too) late to a party, only fashionably late.
Silliness aside, the idea that Twitter is removing the need for episodic blogging is one I had not thought of before; I wonder how popular the idea might be across the breadth of the ‘sphere.
As a reporter in the thick of it I can only tip my hat to you; my sole experience at a convention, if it can so be called rather than an elaborate marketplace, was one of disorientation and surprise at the number of people in costumes.
Anyhow, my thanks for the comment.
I’ve been half jokingly call a MicroAniBlogger for some time(though I guess I’ll need to ditch the Micro bit now) exactly because of this, I don’t think I’d ever really want to do an episodic blog post, it’s just more natural for me to post that kind of thing on twitter.
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I think the increased social interaction among bloggers via Twitter could partly be attributed to Twitter’s casual format. It’s much easier to tweet something like, “Hey want to work on something together?” than to do so via blog posts and their formal looking contact page that requires a name and a subject. Twitter makes the bloggers behind the posts a lot more personable as many of us share the minutiae of our daily lives, unrelated to a formal anime blog post. (I kind of do this… a little too much. :( I sometimes regret tweeting some personal things… But that’s a different story. ) Anyway, this personal intimacy shared on Twitter makes it much easier to gauge attitudes and chat.
If we look at the bloggers that most often interact across blogs, we’d see that their Twitter accounts are often full of random, seemingly mundane life details unrelated to anime. But perhaps it is precisely these nonsense, “insignificant” tweets that promote social interaction among bloggers.
Personally, I’m a great fan of nonsense and the minutiae of character. As you note, they help flesh out the person behind the ‘cartoon girl head’, and whilst nonsense could be considered inherently pointless, I dare say it has the capacity to invoke thought and may lead to new things; new ways of looking at an old idea. Alongside adding a dash of colour to what would otherwise be a very barren world.
Thank you for your comment.
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I feel a little guilty and self-congratulatory for doing this, but I wrote a rather long (complement?) to your piece at my own blog: http://akirascuro.wordpress.com/2012/03/14/decolonizing-the-anisphere/.
The value of Twitter is that it is a coffeehouse, a grand, noisy arena for the exchange of unfiltered ideas. I think the next step, riding off of twitter’s success in creating communication, is to elaborate upon those ideas that we find interesting on Twitter and on other blogs and turn them into full articles on our own blogs, thus creating a fully collaborative environment within the anisphere. Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
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