#SOTU, following an event on Twitter by Domenico Nicosia

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This year, I chose to “watch” the State of the Union Address in a different way — by listening to it on the radio and following it on Twitter.

The first thing I saw was this:

obama gif

In previous years I only watched the speech on the television, and I must say, I’m not fully satisfied with the Twitter experience.

The whole ordeal can be summed up in various hashtags and gifs. But that was already compiled into an article titled, “State of the Union in three GIFs and one quote” published on the Washington Post yesterday.

This oversimplification of an hour-long speech is somewhat alarming. It appears as though some people were paying more attention to what was being said about the speech rather than the speech itself and its content. Personally, it was hard to pay attention to both the Twitter steam and the speech audio at the same time. I found myself drifting and unable to digest what President Obama was actually saying.

I got lost between peoples’ reactions and the their “live tweeting” quotes and other main talking points. I attempted to join the conversation but did not feel as though what I said added to the “discussion.”

In my opinion that’s what it is about — a discussion or a conversation, something that cannot be held in 140 characters.


Any tips or pointers are welcome in the comments section below.


Post edited by Steven Kapoloma

2 Comments on “#SOTU, following an event on Twitter by Domenico Nicosia”

  1. I never would have thought to “watch” Obama’s SOTU through Twitter, but I agree that those so-called conversations can be pretty confusing. People try to pick out the most radical or comical thing that was said, in order to catch the most attention. Our obsession with social media often takes away from the actual analysis of important speeches like this one and demotes what the speech actually means.

    Here’s a writer who believes Twitter conversations are worthwhile: http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2013/08/28/twitter_conversations_why_those_confusing_new_blue_lines_actually_make_sense.html

    1. Thank you for the article, Tayllor! I have saved it and will read it shortly. Personally do you find Twitter conversations productive?

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