Monday, November 23, 2009

What twit is going to buy a book of tweets?

This is the height of absurdity: A company is offering to publish custom-made books filled with people’s posts on Twitter.
Imagine a 200-page book filled with nothing but your comments and observations made on the microblogging site.
TweetBookz is offering to compile your best tweets in a hard cover book for $30 and soft cover book for $20. It sounds like a joke, but it’s backed by a professional marketing campaign, including a slick Web site at
Twitter was created for people who thought blogging was too much work. It’s got all the charm and literary merit of text messaging.
Most tweets are in-the-moment notes, written in shorthand and often as part of a conversation. They’re full of typos, misspellings and grammatical errors. Other tweets simply share Web links.
Are these the sort of things you really want to archive for posterity?
There are a few clever writers on Twitter, but I doubt even they would buy a book of their tweets. It’s a digital medium after all.
A press release announcing TweetBookz on Monday revealed some interesting limitations for tweet book publishing:

“To keep the tweets authentic, users are not allowed to edit past tweets or add new tweets directly to the books. Additionally, users CANNOT purchase books of other people’s tweets, although they can send gift cards to fellow Twitter users enabling them to print their own books.”

Tweetbookz timing is pretty bad considering that there are indications that Twitter’s popularity has peaked and is in decline.

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