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Jul 20, 2009

Move Over Shaq, IBM Systems Magazine Is Now Tweeting

By Evelyn Hoover

Social media. Some of it I get, some not so much. I'm on Facebook and LinkedIn. I  understand, somewhat, the benefits they bring to my personal and work lives, respectively. When it comes to Twitter, I admit to being something of a humbug. Facebook, for instance, enables me to keep track of the goings on in the life my friend Sean who I don't often see because of the busyness of our lives and the distance between our homes. LinkedIn keeps me in touch with people I work with or have worked with in the past. There's certainly value there.

But Twitter? I just don't get it. I don't need to know the status of everyone on an hourly or more frequent basis. "I'm at Starbucks enjoying a latte" read a recent tweet. I was tempted to reply "Who cares." I decided not to. So, yes, I have a personal Twitter account, which I've tweeted with a total of two times. Feel free to follow me, but don't expect much activity there.

Still I find it an interesting medium that may sometime prove valuable. This house tweets notifying its owner of water usage, electricity usage, mouse activity (yuck). Might this someday become ubiquitous much as security systems have become in recent years? Maybe.

While I remain skeptical, I recognize that Twitter is a sign of the times, growing at an astounding 1,382 percent, according to quoting Nielsen Online. IBM Systems Magazine is joining the ranks of Ashton Kutcher and Shaq. We have set up Twitter accounts for all three publications: Power Systems--IBM i edition: IBMimag; Power Systems--AIX edition: AIXmag; and Mainframe edition: Mainframemag. We've already begun tweeting and are just starting to build our following.

We plan to use the medium as a way to keep readers informed about articles as they are posted online, keep readers up-to-date about activities at conferences the editors attend (e.g., COMMON, SHARE, IBM tech conferences, etc.) and generally build awareness for our Web site.

Like all things social media, Twitter is meant to encourage conversation. So it won't just be the editors tweeting to you. We hope it will evolve into a dialog. We'd like to use Twitter as a way to solicit article ideas and reader feedback and find sources for articles.

I hope you'll follow us on Twitter. Let us know what you think we should tweet about. Tell us how we're doing. Give us some article ideas. We'll do our best to tweet back. In the meantime, I'll put my skepticism aside and join the conversation.


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What is your twitter ID? I searched for it and didn't find it on the first couple of pages.

Hi There,
I think it's great! Our System-z Linux group ( ) is now a follower of your tweets...


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