Apparently I am ignorant to the laws of the Twitterverse. I’m finding the lack of punctuation, abbreviations, and slang creates a confusing atmosphere where being drawn into a feed may or may not be a conversation, but they look surprisingly alike in structure. Throw in numbers used as words, and I become baffled, my eyes losing focus among the characters.
I grew to adulthood believing that a conversation was a mutual exchange of information between people with an understanding of the topic, a direct interchange of two or more willing participants. I have found myself pulled into a poorly written Twitter exchanges because someone attached my handle to it, but in no way was the “conversation” directed at me or inviting my comment, at least not to my understanding. Due to a lack of punctuation, a tweet can be read with several different meanings, not all of which leave a positive impression. Usually, I refuse to be drawn in, for I know that the “discussion” will eventually be lost within the multitude of misguided mentionings.
Twitter’s inherently brief structure has always puzzled me, hence my long delay in joining the ranks of the Tweeters. Constructing a coherent message in 140 characters or less is not impossible, but does restrict the use of vocabulary and is further limited if one wishes to include a handle or a link or a hashtag or any of the myriad of tools to gain exposure from tens of thousands of eyes. I prefer to restrict my Tweeting to business, but even that proves challenging to get the entire, clear message across the eyes of the Tweetees. It does provide practice in succinctness.
At times, I read Tweets and shake my head in utter confusion as to what they mean. They look like gibberish, a jumble of letters and numbers and characters of a language alien to my background but somewhat resembling my native tongue. And we wonder why we are no longer able to understand each other in real life.