OMG! Library of Congress to store tweets
The Library of Congress has decided to store the electronic history of Twitter. It is great to recognize this new social communication tool, but what are they going to do with all those tweets about everyone's breakfast, lunch and dinner?
THE ultimate narcissist's dream has come true. The Library of Congress announced it will store each Twitter message since the Web site's start in 2006.
Twitter is donating its extensive collection of tweets, which will be available on a six-month delay for scholarly use.
The sentiment is nice, giving the common person a place in history, but in reality, this endeavor will just save a lot of irrelevant information.
Twitter's recent growth has been phenomenal, to say the least. Last March, 525,000 different people used the site. Last month, 22 million users flooded Twitter with more than 50 million tweets per day. In addition, the site acquires 300,000 new users daily.
It is clear that Twitter is becoming an increasingly important part of society and has played a significant part in cultural events, such as the 2009 Iranian elections and President Barack Obama's campaign.
Tweets surrounding these events deserve recognition as relevant parts of history. But your neighbor's tweet about what she had for breakfast? Not so much.
What is the point of storing each and every tweet? Some historians argue this kind of database could provide important information on consumer and societal trends.
Really though, what kind of information can be gathered from a tweet that reads "OMG! I love Starbucks. Second latte of the day!" that cannot be obtained from a detailed financial report?
The best thing to come from this is the prospect that people might become more conscious of what they post online, but that is just being optimistic.
It is indeed significant that Twitter has been recognized as an important part of society, but the pointless chatter making up a large part of the millions of daily tweets is not.