Why Twitter reminds me of PowerPoint

Reading Time: 2 minutes

David Ko talked about the flaws in Twitter as a source of news. In his post David cites John Dvorak as highlighting seven flaws of Twitter as a news provider:

  • Incompleteness
  • Inaccuracy
  • Vulnerability to hoaxers
  • Lack of analysis
  • Skewed priorities
  • Vulnerability to manipulation
  • Being too close to a story: the difference between a journalist and a witness

In hip-hop terms ‘don’t hate the player, hate the game’, Twitter as a platform doesn’t present itself as a source of reputable journalism. And the things that Dvorak cites as problems could be said of many other platforms including blogs, websites, newspapers, books, magazines, television and radio.

The problem with Twitter is ‘us’ as users and our interpretation of the material on there as rightly David Ko points out.

This all reminded me of Edward Tufte and his famous Wired article ‘PowerPoint is Evil’, particularly the final paragraph that said:

PowerPoint is a competent slide manager and projector. But rather than supplementing a presentation, it has become a substitute for it. Such misuse ignores the most important rule of speaking: Respect your audience.

Yes, that’s the very people who used to demand ‘can I have that document in PowerPoint’ and used to inflict little stick men art, Heath Robinson-esque organisation charts or pictures of high-fiving faux business executives in their artwork. The same people who believe the personal touch means writing email in Comic Sans.

Ultimately it is not any platform creator’s job to protect us from the frigtards, pranksters and haters that populate our world, that is why we were imbued with common-sense (some more than others) and that the theory of Darwinian evolution should kick in.

Incidentally my long-held opinion of John Dvorak as an opinionated linkbaiting jack-ass par excellence and a sorry excuse for a journalist was reinforced by the article.