I found this article via http://twittown.com/twitter/five-worst-excuses-not-using-twitter
If you’re as pro-Twitter as I am, you’ve probably heard a lot of your Twitter-hater friends give some pretty crazy excuses for why they won’t use Twitter. I myself have some particularly close friends who simply refuse to Tweet – and they’re always making excuses for why they won’t do it. Luckily I’ve invested a lot of time and energy into arguing with them – so you don’t have to. Check out these five worst excuses for not using Twitter, along with some snappy comebacks you can throw back at them:
- “I don’t use Twitter because I don’t have anything to say.”
- “I don’t use Twitter because you can’t say anything meaningful in 140 characters.”
- “I don’t have time to use Twitter.”
- “I don’t use Twitter because I’m not interested in hearing about what people are eating for breakfast.”
- “I don’t use Twitter because it’s a waste of time.”
I hear this one from my friends all the time. They seem to feel like they need to have some kind of message, some sort of goal in mind, when they sit down to use Twitter. This couldn’t be farther from the truth – if you have a reason to open your mouth (besides eating and heavy breathing) you have a reason to use Twitter. On the off-chance that your friends are so uninteresting that they really don’t have anything to say, that’s OK too – with Twitter you can just listen. If they don’t have anything to say AND they don’t have anything that they’re remotely interested in hearing about…you might want to find more interesting friends.
On the contrary, some of history’s most meaningful statements have been “tweetable.” Briefly reviewing some of the most famous quotations and famous sayings will show that the drastic majority of them are 140 characters or less. Why? Because pithiness and brevity go hand in hand. When my friends tell me “you can’t say anything meaningful in 140 characters” I tell them, “If it takes more than 140 characters to convey the main idea, it probably wasn’t as meaningful as you thought it was.”
Now that’s just silly. Most of us are fairly capable typists; sending a tweet, even a full 140-character tweet, takes us around 30 seconds (and that includes proofreading). Even if you’re jabbing at an iPhone with chubby fingers, we’re still talking about one or two minutes here. Reading Tweets takes even less time, and tweets aren’t like newspaper articles – you can stop reading them whenever you want. They’re short. If people say they don’t have time to use Twitter, what that probably means is that they don’t think Twitter is worth spending any time on – and that’s a different topic altogether.
I’m so tired of hearing this one. Whoever started the rumor that Twitter is all about telling the world that you’re “making a sandwich” should be thrown to the zombies. Briefly reviewing the last 50 of my followers’ tweets, there is not a single one about what people are eating. Those fifty tweets cover a wide variety of topics – what books people are reading, the usage and meaning of the word “obtuse,” the best/worst action movies, Billy Mays’ recent appearance on South Park…but nothing about making a sandwich. There was one about a guy trying to do his laundry after drinking heavily, but that was about the closest it got.
Tell that to #iranelection. A significant portion of the rest of the world takes Twitter seriously – why wouldn’t you? All that saying it’s “a waste of my time” does is make you look ignorant – which you’re not, or you probably wouldn’t be my friend in the first place.
So there you go – the five most maddening excuses I hear for not using Twitter, and some of the responses I give people. Be forewarned: using these counter-arguments with your friends is not likely to immediately change their minds. The best way to convince a Twitter-hater that they’re in the wrong is to sit down with a good example – like #iranelection – of how Twitter has the potential to change the world, 140 characters at a time.
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