Today I found something that is worth talking about. I know what most of you are saying out there, that I talk too much about social media and you have heard the words Twitter and tweet one too many times. But the fact of the matter is I am not planning on stopping this chatter about these social networking tools, and as time goes on I am sure that I will be talking about them even more than I do now. (Scary thought, right?) Each and ever day I am getting more and more excited about social media and the more I learn the happier I become. I blog my little fingers off and I tweet all night when I get off of work. I am on Facebook fifty times a day (again, after I get off work of course) and I obsess over status updates and RTs. I can simply not get enough of this social media craze.
Twitter, as we all know (and if you do not know please stop reading my blog) has a minimum of 140 characters for any given message. This includes the user name if you are replying to a person’s original tweet or a link if you feel so inclined to post one. Just be thankful that there are link services out there that will shorten the link for you or we would not have near the amount of shared information a we do now.
But never fear if you have run out of characters once or twice because the solution has finally arrived. Meet Woofer. Woofer, like Twitter, has a limit of characters that you can post. But this one has a minimum number of characters that you HAVE to post. Instead of saying, “no more than 140,” Woofer says, “No less than 1,400.” This theory has actually been tested, as well. One user added a post with over 1.6 million characters. The post appeared just like any other. (This is the sheer beauty of clearfix. Don’t know what clearfix is? Google it.)
Some of you might laugh at this concept, and it might have even been a joke from the start with the creators of the service, but I think it is ingenious. Think about all of the active writers out there that are trying to get their work published. Maybe poets or novelists trying to get their work in your hands if he or she is unable to find a publicist.
I am a writer working on my first novel. Imagine being able to post chapters to get feedback or thought processes to get a better understanding of how my characters are interacting. Or maybe I want an additional outlet for my blog posts that you so graciously read every day. Either way this service, if I choose to use it, could potentially be a gold mine for my writing career.
Woofer, surprisingly, looks very similar to Twitter. So unless there is a loop hole in the copyright law, or the folks at Twitter are the ones behind this technology, then they might want to reconsider their design. (I wonder if they considered this a homage to witter if they would get away with it. I know that is how guys like Weird Al Yankovic stay in business.) Copyright law for design work is very tricky. Art, in general (for instance a logo or a brochure) must be changed 80% from the original piece to be considered “yours”. If it is not then the creator can sue and basically ruin your career as an artist or a designer. Look at the guy that designed the Obama poster that we all love to hate. (You know the one that I am talking about.) He took that image from an Associated Press article, threw some Photoshop filters on it, and ended up being one of the most talked about artists of the campaign. But he got caught and was later forced with legal pressure to admit that the image came from the Associated Press.
But all-in-all this idea might actually have some merit. After all, from the length of my blog posts you can probably tell, I tend to have a lot to say. Perhaps this is the future of Twitter? Perhaps this is the future of writing? Perhaps this is the future of social media? Only time will tell whether our future of communication is in 140 or 1,400 characters.