Twitter allows us the privilege of communicating to each other in no more than 140 characters. While many high level politicos in New Jersey like Mayor Cory Booker, Governor-Elect Chris Christie, and Governor Corzine tweet on a regular basis, just how much wisdom can be shared in 140 characters anyhow?
Mayor Booker’s most recent Tweet [as of 7:45pm/Thursday/12.17.09] plugged —in 140 characters or less—his monthly radio show on “Newark Today” on WBGO 88.3. Earlier in the day he shared some wisdom, again in less than 140 characters: [“If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes.” Andrew Carnegie]. Earlier in the week, he promoted Census 2010 jobs: [To all in Brick City: 2010 Census hiring now – $20/hour http://2010.census.gov/2010censusjobs/.]
And he even confirmed that it was actually himself tweeting: [Nope ur not that lucky, ur stuck w/ me! RT @marcijonesx Is it really THE CoryBooker on twitter or his communications dir's asst's secretary?]. Only problem I had was his spelling of ‘Oy!’ in this tweet 12.15.09: [I just ran a red light to demonstrate our City's new Red Light Cameras (Oye! Now I have 2 pay the ticket) were 1st in state 2 put'em up.]
Mostly, tweeting seems to be used for ‘information’, and not that much ‘wisdom’.
How much wisdom could be displayed if, for example, President Lincoln tweeted the “Gettysburg Address”:
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposi.
Not too much there. Just how old the country was, and that we were conceived in liberty.
How about George Washington’s Farewell Address?
Friends and Citizens: The period for a new election of a citizen to administer the executive government of the United States being not far.
Too bad. Never got to even warn us against permanent foreign alliances, or an over-powerful military establishment or even warn us against the party system—-if he had tweeted.
And finally, FDR’s call to declare war on Japan, after Pearl Harbor attack:
"Mr. Vice President, Mr. Speaker, Members of the Senate, and of the House of Representatives: Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 — a date which”
A date which will what? If FDR, had tweeted, we’d still never know.
I think Twitter has its benefits, but it’s tough to get across those really important messages.