Where Would You Go If Twitter Disappeared?



I had an awesomesauce conversation with fellow Grand Effect blogger Sarah Perez last night. Twitter came up in the conversation and I asked Sarah, “Where would we go if Twitter was gone?” We debated about this for a while, and I’ve decided to pose the question here on SheGeeks.

Alternative Twitter Services

Pownce Surprisingly, Pownce and Jaiku were far from the first answers that came out of either of our mouths. In my opinion, Pownce and Jaiku are serious competitors to Twitter for various reasons. For one, there aren’t nearly as many web apps and services out there for Pownce and Jaiku as there are for Twitter. A new Twitter service pops up almost everyday. What was the last app or service you heard about that supported Pownce or Jaiku? My point exactly.

jaiku Second, Twitter has a massive community. If it went down, everyone wouldn’t pick one of the alternatives and head there. Most of us would spread out to various platforms and services. It would be a fragmentation of followings and sub-communities that most would not survive.

Lastly, Pownce and Jaiku’s communities are dead compared to Twitter.

FriendFeed Service

friendfeed-logo.pngFriendfeed would be my first alternative to Twitter. Sarah noted that Friendfeed could easily add Twitter-like functionality into the service, but they don’t wish to be Twitter’s competitor. Many Twitter users are already utilizing Friendfeed and some even use it as another tool for tracking tweets and receiving Twitter updates. Numerous Friendfeed/Twitter apps are out there such as Alert Thingy, bTT, and Twhirl. I could definitely see quite a few Twitter users flocking to Friendfeed if Twitter ever disappeared.

If this were to happen, I’d be really worried for the developers of Friendfeed. This scenario would raise a heap of scaling issues for Friendfeed, which makes me wonder if it’s one of the reasons why they’re not trying to compete with Twitter.

Standby and Wait Approach

Standby and wait is an interesting option, but most of us have already picked this choice on numerous occasions, most notably when Twitter goes down. We simply wait it out. We irritably wait until Twitter finishes PMSing, even though Twitter gives us no warning and takes us for granted all the time. It’s like a bad relationship that we can’t shake. If Twitter disappeared, we might dabble in the alternatives, but everyone would be looking out for any signs that Twitter is coming back to us.

There’s No Place Like Twitter

So far, Friendfeed seems to be the closest fix to anyone’s Twitter addiction. However, we all know that there’s nothing like Twitter, even when it’s down.

  • Are there any other services you would consider?
  • What approach would you take?
Corvida Raven

A natural pioneer at grasping the rapidly changing landscape of technology, Corvida Raven talks tech in plain English on SheGeeks.net.