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July 18, 2011

2

I Can Quit Any Time… I Just Don’t Feel Like It

Lots of things have happened on The Internet since I was last here. Let’s get this rolling with a list:

  • I moved to Toronto (in “real life,” not on The Internet).
  • I texted a random picture of badgers to an anonymous person (this is known as “bexting”).
  • I exploded a waffle cone of ice cream all over my pants (just bear with me here, please).
  • My clone chased a flying receipt a block down Bloor Street (it wasn’t me, I swear).
  • I had my will broken by a colossal, unbeatable gobstopper (I give up).
Ok, so none of those things happened on The Internet (why do I keep capitalizing that?). But in speaking with my brother yesterday, I came to an interesting realization – I am addicted to Twitter. It’s a sickness. Or… Is it?

The Evidence

Tristan is 74% addicted to Twitter

Oatmeal says I’m 74% addicted Twitter. How much more addicted than that are you?

My dear brother, Mark, is one of those rare people who aren’t afraid to speak their minds. When he brought up the sheer amount of Twittering I do with some calculations, I’ll admit to having been taken slightly aback. But I truly appreciated what it made me consider. Behold:

  • Over the course of three years, I’ve posted nearly 25,000 tweets.
  • If you assume it takes one minute to write each tweet, that amounts to 416 solid hours of tweeting.
  • If you were to consolidate all that tweeting into one contiguous block of time, you’d be typing tweet after tweet for over 17 days straight.
  • This doesn’t even take into account the time spent reading other people’s tweets.
Oatmeal says I’m 74% addicted to Twitter. What does a person have to do to make it all the way to 100%, I wonder?

The Defense

OMG!True internet addiction can be very debilitating. But using a service like Twitter regularly and making it a part of your life doesn’t necessarily mean you have some sort of sickness or crazy dependency. What about the benefits that such a tool brings?

Making friends. I can say, without hesitation, that I have connected with some of the most interesting people I know through Twitter. I’ve made friends that I can see myself being friends with for years to come. I’ve shared laughs and made great memories with great people who I never would have met, had it not been for Twitter. I wouldn’t give that up for anything – Not even bacon.

Accessing knowledge. Twitter is full of people who are so much smarter than I am. How many times have I had a question about something that I could easily find the answer to with 15 minutes of research, answered in 60 seconds flat by posing a quick question to The Twitterverse? You can ask, answer, and engage; And have fun doing so.

Laughing. There is so much humour on Twitter; So much brilliant wit. There are so many times throughout the week when a tweet will catch my eye, making me stop and laugh out loud. The 140 character limit is really good for a quick joke that will bring a smile to your day.

Expressing thoughts more concisely. Yes, I still have that flair for making short stories ridiculously long. But spending 17 days writing tweets does tend to force you to express your written thoughts more concisely. You’d be amazed at how much better something sounds when written with less words.

I Hate Gobstoppers

It’s true that, from time to time, it’s easy to start tweeting about absolutely inane things that nobody cares about. Case in point: I highly doubt that anyone really gave a crap about the status of that colossal unbeatable gobstopper. But maybe a tweet like that once in a while just makes you a little more human to the majority of your followers, who may never actually get a chance to see your beautiful face in person.

Tristan and Mark CuschieriTristan vs. The Colossal Unbeatable Gobstopper

Either way, I’m thankful to Mark for giving me something to think about… And even better, for giving me something write about. Love you, bro.

If you’re on Twitter, come drop me a line. I don’t bite… Unless you’re a gobstopper. Obligatory wink: 😉

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. Jul 25 2011

    but when will you move on the internet to Toronto? 😉
    great post! when you posted it I said that I was kindda over twitter these days but you made me think, damn you! 🙂 I have met the best people on it from any social network / portal / site on the internet ever! I do think now it’s harder to meet random interesting people like before! I have friends on it from 2009 and still talk to at least weekly! But it is a bit more cliquey now! I think this might be a thing with gay twitterers and maybe London twitterers. They can be really bitchy. But I have decided to ignore the whole clique thing and everytime I think I won’t know anyone else from this place I meet a new great person to speak too 🙂 I am far more addicted than I thought 😉 I really like G+ though! mmmm gobstoppers!

    Reply
    • Jul 26 2011

      Twitter won’t let you go so easily, Dan. It has unnatural power!

      Reply

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