Facebook vs. Twitter

This evening I posted on to the Z’s Cup of Tea Facebook wall that I rarely login to Facebook and that I’m more active on Twitter. Before today, I don’t remember the last time that I logged in or even posted a status message or shared a link. Nowadays I mostly share my blog posts there via WordPress.com’s Publicize feature. I also shared my Facebook post on Twitter:

I’m also posting it here because there are many still who aren’t on either Facebook or Twitter, or don’t go to these sites. The primary reason why I am posting here, though, is to explain more about why I’m not really on Facebook and why I use Twitter more.

I never used Facebook or Twitter before I began food blogging. I had no personal interest, even when friends urged me to sign up (I reasoned back then that if I could email them, if I could phone them, or if I could meet them face-to-face, I didn’t need to sign up for another avenue of communication). I joined Twitter first, because of people who had commented on my blog posts and whom I connected with. I joined Facebook later, as I saw my recipes being shared there on food bloggers’ pages.

Of the two, Twitter has been the most constant: I use it more and I actually like it more than Facebook. (That’s just me, I know that some people find it the opposite.) In a Wired interview from last year, William Gibson compared Twitter to being like the street. I agree with this analogy.

I’m generally aware of important news stories because of Twitter and because of the people I follow (I don’t follow any official news sources, like newspapers or television networks) and usually it’s where I’ll learn about it first, before I see a headline.  Sometimes I’ll find or learn something that I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have otherwise, whether to an interesting article or a video. I know more about tv shows I don’t watch because of people I follow (kind of like how I learned more about Twilight and The Hunger Games because of what I heard people saying than anything I could have read; I don’t really watch a lot of tv). Twitter is also, depending, my preferred way to get updates from different blogs and bloggers I follow in addition to email or in lieu of an RSS feed.

This isn’t a defense of Twitter, I’m simply expressing why I like it. I find it easier to use than Facebook, and friendlier in a way. Twitter and email are the top two things I check regularly on the go on my iPod touch.

As an aside, my writing of this post reminds me of this article I read some weeks ago that Matt Mullenweg, the founder of Automattic and WordPress, tweeted. It’s about taking back control over your social networks and how blogging factors into the whole social media buzz. (It also makes mention of WordPress.com’s Publicize feature, which I highlighted in my Facebook post and mentioned in this post.) I couldn’t post this on Twitter because, well, it clearly goes over and beyond the 140-character limit. I couldn’t have posted it on to Facebook either because I’m pretty sure this is too long for a Facebook post (FB has a limit, too).

So, those are my two cents. Which one do you use more, Twitter or Facebook? Or do you only use one of them? Sound off in the comments!

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8 thoughts on “Facebook vs. Twitter

  1. Iris

    I use Facebook and rarely twitter. I find it too overwhelming to keep up with both and I’ve considered dropping my twitter account, but I know it’s good to keep it for the blog/business. Personally I’d be much happier without either of them but I know they’re a necessity these days if you’re working for yourself.

    Reply
    1. Zoe Post author

      Hi Iris, I agree with you re: the overwhelm aspect. (The same reason why I haven’t really kept up with Google+, though I try.) Does Blogger have something similar to WordPress.com’s Publicize that you could use to update your Twitter or another service that you could use? Smitten Kitchen’s Twitter feed (@smittenkitchen) is mostly updated by a kind of automated robot service.

      Reply
  2. thinkactlive

    I’m only on Facebook for family and only have family on my friend list. I got mad for the umpteenth time at Facebook and stayed away for several months, then came back and whittled it down to just family. If we weren’t so far-flung, I’d close that one.

    I guess I need to put a note on my computer to remind me to check Twitter! I probably forget because I find the little short snippets to be distracting in a way. Too much computer time messes with my concentration somehow, especially if I jump from one thing to another and Twitter is just jumpy to me.

    I get a lot of inspiration from Google Plus and I’m on there nearly every day. There are many artists, writers, photographers and just generally interesting folks that I enjoy.

    Reply
    1. Zoe Post author

      That’s my general impression from what I’ve heard/seen online about Google+. I think it’s great that there’s an online community for that sort of collaboration and for their work to be appreciated in a way that Facebook or Twitter may not be able to accommodate. Facebook is great for families keeping in touch, especially those who are all over the globe.

      Reply
  3. hunterslyonesse

    I’ve been using Facebook for a long time. I refused to join Twitter just because I didn’t want one more thing to keep up with or distract me. However, I eventually gave in 1 1/2 years ago after the GFAF Expo and Shirley and Brittany telling me I should. Peer pressure? Maybe so. I think I use both equally. I have followers on Facebook that aren’t on Twitter and Twitter followers not on Facebook. I can be quite scarce on both though. Sometimes I get tired of the distraction and I may check, but not post anything. I absolutely refuse to join Pinterest, Google +, and Vine (the new thing I hear). I do Instagram sometimes. I prefer not to spread myself so thin across all forms of social media. I think a few is just fine to focus on. Personally, I do use Facebook a lot to keep up with family because while we can call or email, it’s easier to reach a larger group of them on Facebook at one time. I have an ENORMOUS family and 95% of them live on the West Coast or in Hawai`i, so the time difference can be substantial. They’re getting home from work as I’m getting into bed. And believe it or not, I talk to my best friend more on Facebook than the phone or email. She’s grown to hate email and we’ve never been much for talking on the phone except maybe once or twice a year. Weird, I know. That’s just how we are and we’re still besties after all these years. :D

    Reply
    1. Zoe Post author

      Hi Debi, I’d definitely chalk up myself joining Twitter to peer pressure as well but with good intentions! I’ve joined Pinterest and Google+ but barely go on either and, frankly, have neglected them off and on (I like Pinterest, but am terrible at using it as social media). I hope that at some point WordPress has a Publicize feature for Google+, so that I can at least update it that way. I used to be on Instagram, but quit it after Facebook bought the company and I have no interest in joining Vine.

      I think it’s wonderful that families use Facebook to keep in touch – it seems that it’s more effective than email, in some respects – and especially those who are all over the globe and have drastic time differences, like yours. A lot of my family in Fiji use it to keep in touch and it’s even the expected mode of communication; instead of being asked for an email address, one is asked if they’re on Facebook. As much as a pain as all of these different social media networks could and can be, the silver lining is that people have a choice about what networks they want to use or not and for what purposes, whether it is personal or business, and when it’s for personal, how they can keep in touch with friends and family. Whatever works and works for them. :)

      Reply
  4. Carmen

    I personally have become more and more familiar to Pinterest than to any other social media site. I am connected to Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus, also, but my personal preference is on Pinterest. I like that people can post there any really inspiring photos and I found myself many times inspired by some picture related to fashion, books or teas.
    I also understand your preferance for Twitter, as it is a communication source where people actually do micro-blogging, sharing their interests and not only posting links or promoting themselves as it often happens on Facebook. I also enjoy the privacy of Twitter.

    Reply
    1. Zoe Post author

      Hi Carmen, I like using Pinterest for my own use and in my spare time – recreationally, for lack of a better word, I suppose – but as a social network, I am terribly negligent. I’m off and on about it. Again, what’s wonderful about having all these social networks is that we have a choice for which one(s) we want to use and find our preference(s). Thanks for your comment!

      Reply

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