“I’m blogging about Twitter.”
Answering the question “What are you doing?” in 140 characters or less is the very simple business model about one of the newest social networking sites on the Web, Twitter.com.
It’s called twittering, and founder Evan Williams said the site was created “more of less on a whim.” Now, with the site getting rants and raves from bloggers around the world and user updates reaching 900,000 so far in March, Williams told attendees at a Boulder conference on Weblogs and Social Media that it’s “taking over our lives.”
Williams, also a founder of ODEO.com and before that, co-founder of Blogger.com, drew laughs showing some of the Twitter posts, including one of his own recently — “I just wrecked my car. I’m fine.” Another example: “Internet. I’m in labor.”
His audience at the Boulder Marriott, most surfing wirelessly on their laptops and one posting to the live demonstration of Twitter, seemed enthralled with yet another way to communicate to friends instantly.
Twitter, Williams explained, has been called everything from “blogging on crack” to “dodgeball but boring.” He liked one blogger’s description of “ambient intimacy.” For a site that’s only nine months old and still trying to figure out what it will be, Williams described it as simply a “blogging tool.”
Already new applications are springing up, including Twitterific, a small desktop app for Macs, and Twittervision, which maps the location of anyone posting to Twitter. Another site, Twitterholic.com, lists the top 100 “Twits” ranked by their following of friends.
Williams is No. 5 on the list with 1,500 people — something he says he’s not really encouraging because he doesn’t want to see Twitter become another popularity contest.