Playing in Twaffic on the Twitter Superhighway


As I told my mother…

Twitter is “…like a superhighway comprising an infinite number of lanes that head in all directions. Over a half billion cars travel this highway, and they’re all honking their horns at once, 24 hours/day 7 days a week.”

Anticipating the question: “But what does it do?” —I quote:

“Twitter is an online social networking website and microblogging service that allows users to post and read text-based messages of up to 140 characters, known as ‘tweets'”. -

It’s a bit too long for a tweet, however, coming in at 171 characters. With a little trimming, we can get there:

Twitter -online social networking website/microblogging service where users post & read 140 character text-based messages called ‘tweets’

-with 2 characters to spare.

There are no rules, other than the 140 character limit, which is actually not a rule—you can always break rules. Nope-the 140 character limit is an inviolable Law of the Twitter Universe. The vast majority of tweets fly by at warp speed; most of us 115 million active users see but a tiny percentage of the tweets tweeted by our followers. And vice versa. Thank heavens!

Hovering around 9,100 tweets/second, Twitter twaffic is nothing short of stupefying….see Even if I were riveted to my Twitter screen 24 hours/day, I could not keep up with the twaffic that rolls relentlessly by. Not that each of us gets hammered with 9100 tweets per second by any means. Maybe 100 or so per minute, but who even wants to keep up?

Whatever are we doing there?

I’m there to attract and funnel readers to my webpage, as I build a reader base for my book Corvus Rising, though it’s not clear to anyone that Twitter followers translate into webpage traffic or book sales. No one claims that people looking for a good book to read will go looking for it on Twitter. But Amazon is there, as is B&N and all the major publishing houses, a gazillion authors and bloggers.

The riches of Twitter are the jewels hidden amid the half billion users—kind of like a huge library of data floating by at 9100 titles/sec that you can filter somewhat into the things you’re interested in. Want to learn everything you want to know about how to publish and market a book? Want to know how to build a fan base for your book/movie/music? Want to know anything?

With a few hashtags, the information streams by, things you’d never dream of asking for or about. Sometimes, it’s just what you need.

Wander out into twaffic! You’ll get hit for sure, but it doesn’t hurt.




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