Here's what I mean:
See where it says WHAT'S HAPPENING?
Well, that's not what it should say. Because frankly, I don't care what you are doing.You could be picking your nose right now, and I don't care, nor will I ever care. So don't tell me.
What it should say is: WHAT DO YOU KNOW THAT I SHOULD KNOW.
If sold this way, Twitter can provide professionals with a window of almost infinite possibilities. When used as a port to professionalism, Twitter provides an opportunity like no other.
Sharing 140 characters can only provide so much information, so it is very important to understand how to share links. Some links are by themselves more than 140 characters. Does that mean we can't share these links?
No. These long and hairy links can actually be shortened by a number of different link shortening services, including http://www.tinyurl.com/ where you can enter the long url address and make it tiny.
For example, you can take the URL to my favorite blog post: http://www.joebower.org/2010/01/information-vs-reward-and-punishment.html and I can shorten it from 72 characters to 27 charactes. This way I can provide a link while using more of my limited character space to actually explain what the link is about.
When Twitter is sold as a medium to share information rather than just a status update, teachers can see how Twitter can quickly become the best way to share information with like-minded professionals.
For example, this morning I thought I could quickly find some cell biology videos on YouTube. I found some videos, but they were pretty lame and about 300 years old, and I knew my students wouldn't be impressed, so I decided to Tweet this:
In about 10 seconds, I received this reply from Alexandra from Portugal:
I then received this from David from Vancouver:
One of the links these two very kind people provided me was so useful, I used it for the entire morning with my students.
The applications for Twitter are maybe limitless. I encourage you to give it a try.