I signed up for Twitter 3 years ago today, 21st of September 2007. I remember my first impression and the question that immediately popped up in my mind: "What the h-ll should I use this for?"
After a while I eventually found out, and how that happened you can read in my blog post "Why 2009 was the year of Twitter" (the truth is I've only been an active Twitter user for little more than 2 of these 3 years).
Anyway, 21st of September 2007 now marks an important point in my personal and professional development. It needs to be celebrated in some way. Besides following the advice of @CoBPEZ to drink some champagne later tonight (now I have a reason for opening one of the bottles I bought yesterday), I decided to celebrate by writing this blog post.
What then is it that I'm actually celebrating?
To me, the answer is quite simple; I'm celebrating all the people on Twitter who make using Twitter such an enriching and rewarding experience. I am truly grateful for that. So, to all my friends on Twitter: CHEERS!
I'd just like to mention some of the things I'm grateful for:
First of all, I've made many new friends, several of which I've also had the fortune to meet in "real" life. I am sure that I will meet many more in time to come. The power of Twitter becomes truly apparent when you experience this connection between virtual meetings and "real" face-to-face meetings. It reminds me that what’s happening on Twitter is actually REAL, despite that communicating online can sometimes feel a little bit abstract and ambiguous. On Twitter, real people are having real conversations across time, geography, organizations, cultures, demographics, professions, positions, ideologies... Twitter gives you a sense of how it is to live in Arthur C. Clarkes vision of the non-existing city (see video below).
The second thing I’d like to mention is how Twitter provides me with easy access to so many great minds from all over the world - people who are not only willing to share their insights and ideas with me and others, but who are also willing to listen and respond to things that I and other people share with them and anyone else who might be interested...I shouldn't need to explain how important these things are when it comes to learning and growing both as a person and in your profession. As an example, many of my blog posts during the last couple of years have been sparked in discussions that I had on Twitter, and my daily morning routine is now to browse through the Flipboard magazine on my iPad - an interactive and social magazine that my friends on Twitter have put together just for me (that's the feeling, although it's not exactly true) The content is fresh, relevant and personal. But beyond that, and even more important, it's REAL.
So once again: CHEERS!