If you are reading this, there is a good chance you, too, are addicted to Twitter. Why else would you be visiting something called Social Networking Rehab? If you came here because of a link in a Tweet, or a Facebook Status message you are even more deserving of a 28 day stay at INVITATIONS, the Nation's Premiere Social Networking Rehab Facility. You may want to take a moment to fill out an application.
TWITTER: A VICIOUS CYCLE
While for some of you Twitter may be your latest vice, many of the Twitterholics who have visited INVITATIONS have been around since the beginning and have been good Twittizens for several years. Over time it seems that our addiction takes us through a cycle of Twitter usage that represents the full circle of 140 character fixes. The therapists here at INVITATIONS have coined this cycle "The 7 Phases of Twitter" and herewith is a brief timeline of the 7 steps that may lead to your need for 12 steps!
THE 7 PHASES OF TWITTER:
Phase One: "What Are You Doing?Which phase are you in? Are there additional phases that should be added to the cycle?
Your earliest Tweets, wherein we attempt to turn plain into pithy...
Example Tweet: "I am eating tuna fish on rye."
Phase Two: "The Announcement"
In this stage we realize that Twitter can be used to broadcast our other inane activities...
Example Tweet: "Hey, read my blog, will ya? www.mystupidblog.blogspot.com/readitwillya"
Phase Three: "The Conversation"
When other folks start replying to our inanities, we move to this stage and start @replying, boring the rest of the Twittersphere with the ability to follow only one half of a conversation...
Example Tweet: "@soandso Lol. Yeah, I agree! ;-)"
Phase Four: "The Missing Link"
WOW. Just because we are limited to 140 characters doesn't mean we can't link EVERYWHERE! Thanks TinyUrl, Bit.ly, etc...
Example Tweet: "Cool Site with cool stuff! http://tinyurl.com/fbrehab"
Phase Five: "Smokin' Hashtags"
As if sharing links weren't enough to make Twitter de.licio.us, we soon realize we can one-up URL shorteners and add searchable #hastags to our tweets!
Example Tweet: "Cool. I am going fishing today. #fishing #iloveboats #waterboundhookers"
Phase 6: "The Re-Tweet"
Why rely on our own cleverness when we are a click away from using someone else's wit for our own Twit!
Example Tweet: "RT @sass The 7 Phases of Twitter! (Awesome,, but why am I re-tweeting myself?)"
Phase 7: "What are you doing?"
And of course, after experimenting with broadcasting, conversating, sharing links, hashing things out, and spreading the word of others, we come back full circle to the simplicity of where it all started...
Example Tweet: "Wondering if I should Tweet that I am eating tuna fish on rye..."
Photo Credit: © Milos Willing - Fotolia.com