A Scenic Tour of the Online World

Twitter Grows Up

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

Twitter Lists

I’ve been saying since early ’09 that an inflection point of some sort is near for Twitter. As useful as it is, it’s been a one-trick pony, and an easily reproduceable one-trick pony at that. Just about every sizable social networking service has a short-message broadcast feature.

Twitter skews old; Facebook is much more popular with younger kids. (They actually use it to live their social lives, rather than reconnecting with high school pals and reliving old social lives …) LinkedIn is probably more of a threat as it’s more biz-centric.

Or someone could come in and buy Twitter to fold it into a new or existing social network.

Twitter obviously realizes this and seem to be taking action. Lists may be the beginning of their push back.

With Lists, Twitter becomes more interesting and more useful. Lists are a kind of search, and with Lists and more robust true search features, Twitter begins to push into Google’s territory …

It will be interesting to see what happens in the coming few quarters. Already, there’s a lot less “I’m eating an egg salad sandwich.” than there used to be. (Or maybe it’s just easier to avoid.) And more people rely on Twitter for breaking news. Then again, there’s a whole lot more, “try my great new product!” noise, too.

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