Recently Greg Ferro wrote a post titled “5 Reasons TweetChats are Spam” and in a vacuum, I agree with most of his points (although Greg you may have forgot the most annoying part the direct/@ message invites sent out by the marketing folks). Now if you haven’t already, head over and read Greg’s post….
Okay, now that you are back, most of his points revolve around the tweets being unsolicited – isn’t that what all of social media is? The only time you ever solicit tweets or other direct interactions is when you ask someone for a response. Social Media itself is a constant stream of opt in messages. I follow many people, typically not for pictures of their cats or cars but sometimes its a nice distraction for a moment or two but after all I did CHOOSE to follow those people.
A TweetChat, like any other form of communication via social channels is just another tool for you to choose to use, or not to use. Yes they are run by marketing teams to try and generate interest on a particular topic or product. However, if there is a TweetChat going on which covers a subject I am interested in, I use that as an opportunity to (hopefully) meet others who share the same interest – even learn a thing or two from the people engaged. If there happens to be a particularly busy TweetChat I am not interested in then, as Greg pointed out, its fairly easy to filter out the stream based on a hashtag – in many ways the marketing folks are doing us a favor by having them present so we can filter on the hashtag..
So, are TweetChats spam – yea I buy that argument but aren’t most social media streams spam some percentage of time? If you see a TweetChat running you have two choices, use it as an opportunity to learn and connect or turn it off!