Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Stephen Fry: The Da Vinci Code of Twitter

So I took the plunge this morning and started twittering, because I've obviously got far too much time on my hands. (Anyone desperate enough to twitter up can find me @johnquirkbooks)

It's a bizarre concept. Like calling a bunch of friends, colleagues and contacts on a conference call and telling them your innermost thoughts, or that you're off down the pub on the piss. My problem is that most of my family and friends aren't interested in Twitter. The majority of them don't even know about Facebook, so there's no chance of them twittering.

Of course, one of the most intriguing aspects is the insight Twitter offers into the lives of those celebrities you choose to follow. I've picked a few authors, and that will do for now. Some authors I'd like to follow haven't taken the Twitter bait yet, and I've managed to avoid the temptation of following the exciting life of Britney Spears.

There's one celebrity who has pretty much raised the profile of Twitter single-handedly. Check anyone's page for who they are following and chances are you'll see a small pic of Stephen Fry. He's bloody everywhere. People new to Twitter are hearing about how Twitterific Mr Fry is... so they follow him to see what all the fuss is about.

He has quickly established himself as the Da Vinci Code and Titanic of Twitter - phenomenons that feed off the media frenzy created around them, creating an ever-perpetuating popularity. When the Da Vinci Code hype started to buzz, I had to read it to see what all the fuss was about, as did just about everyone. Same with Titanic.

But not this time. I'm not going to follow Mr Fry, although I do realise that by talking about his popularity I'm helping stir that big pot of Twitter buzz for him. I'm going to give him the cold shoulder. Should he deem me worthy of following in the coming weeks and months, then I may well return the compliment. But by Christ I'm going to play hard to get.


Down the Rabbit Hole... said...

Gawd John - I was looking at Twitter myself the other day (probably the same day as you) - humming and haaing, should I or shouldn't I? I gave it a miss though. Mind you, that was before I knew Stephen Fry was on there... :D

David Bridger said...

I was following Stephen before he talked about twitter on telly (J Ross's Load of Self-congratulatory Nonsense programme, I think it was) and his followship increased a hundredfold. Happy to report that the number of followers doesn't affect the experience, which is as civilised and intelligent as you might expect.

He's a genuinely nice bloke.

Brian Clegg said...

Wot David said - I held off the Fry for my first few months of twittering... but I find he's fun to follow, and gives some excellent links, tips etc, being the tech lover he is.

John Quirk said...

You see, I knew this would happen...

He's that good, eh? Ah well, bang goes those principle thingymajigs.

Down the Rabbit Hole... said...

OK - I've done a U-turn - I'm following you and you can now find me @Bushkite ;)

MG said...

Stephen is the best one, you have to follow him!
Here's for why:
1. He's genuinely witty
2. Lovely bloke
3. Leads a fabulously exciting glamorous life and has lots to twitter about for your vicarious enjoyment
4. He can be counted on to regularly tweet. No point following people who don't, frankly.

Slebs to avoid:
Eddie Izzard, Brent Spiner. Just plain dull!

Self promotional but still funny:
Ellen Degeneres (losing the knack already), Jimmy Carr, Richard Herring.

My favourite teenager (don't know who he is but he's great) http://twitter.com/peza679