Artists Pay Back (The Blog)

July 31, 2009

Twitter: The Reckoning

So I joined Twitter. I’d seen the news reports, the tales of fierce rivalries for the most “followers” that raged between people like Ashton and Kanye and, uh, okay just those two mostly. I’d heard how Shaquille O’Neal himself was known to interact with fans at an almost unprecedented rate. I figured it would bring me closer to Hollywood types. I needed to get some kind of closeness, I needed to follow them without actually becoming a stalker (which I’m told is generally frowned upon.) So this my recourse, not stalking – eStalking. Big difference.

So I signed up. Logged in. And promptly began doing the “@FamousNameHere” thing. And since that first day, something magical has happened.

I’ve been routinely ignored.

Yup. Not a tweep, er peep, ah whatever…from a celeb in response to my responses. They make a joke, I make a witty rejoinder and my words just die in in the ether. Apparently in celebrity cyberspace, no one can hear you tweet.

Now, it’s not to say that I’m foolish enough to believe that I’d have Matthew Perry or Jason Segel or even Michael Ian Black LOL’ing at their keyboards and rushing to retweet me. (And bless Mr. Ian Black, so desperately is he pimping out his wonderful new show on Comedy Central he has taken to Twitter like some dude with nothing better to do with his life than constantly interact with the twittering masses. Uh, no offense, Ashton.) Honestly, did I actually believe that within a week or so with one or two responses that I’d be touched by one of the golden Gods from Mount Hollywood?

Uh, yeah. Actually I did. 

Yeah, I’m kind of an idiot, er optimist. No wait, I had it right the first time.

I’m not the first person to make the “high school is just a microcosm of life in general” analogy, but it’s never been more crystal clear than when I joined Twitter. Here I am, the quiet kid in class jockeying for a chance to get the popular kids to notice me. I laugh at their jokes which are not always funny, I try to get them to acknowledge mine which often are. But much like Larry Ford taught me in eighth grade as he would do his hack routines in Algebra class, something is always funnier coming from someone popular. And vice versa.

Now granted, some of these celebs must be getting hundreds or even thousands of responses to their every post and they may or may not be looking beyond the first one or two responses when they deign to check their “@” in-box. They probably scan whichever ones are on screen and pick one or two to respond to. This gives them an air of accessibility without really having to expend much effort. And quick scan of their Twitterings shows that they are busy indeed as their days are fairly consumed with (a) watching TiVo, (b) getting off/on planes, (c) eating, or (d) tweeting about watching TiVo, getting on/off planes and eating. 

So my being ignored is surely nothing personal, but it’s still frustrating. Though it also has its amusing aspects particularly when you look closely at who does get a celeb response. Perhaps there is more to it than just picking a couple responses off the top of the list as most respondees largely fall into two camps. Other celebrities (even those that can be considered marginal, we’re talking the back-half-of-the-alphabet-lister here) and hot chicks.

Tell me this isn’t high school.

Especially the male celebs. It’s fun to watch the sometimes not even remotely amusing or witty or insightful musing garner tons of fawning responses. Some of which are neither amusing, witty or insightful themselves. But they get responses because it’s from another celeb or hot chick. Though I have fallen prey to the fawning over less-than-stellar celeb musings in hopes of getting “noticed” and perhaps my retorts weren’t what one would call ‘inspired,’ I have thrown out some rather clever rejoinders aaaaand…nothing. (For instance, I’ve tweeted a couple of pithy bon mots at the lovely and talented Elizabeth Banks with, sigh, nary an “@” back.) Some of these celebrity brain droppings are of the “Man, ice is really cold. Amiright people…” variety and suddenly #ice is trending.

Ah well, still I try. I’ve done the witty approach, the direct approach, the casual approach, the help-a-brother-out approach and have yet to stick the landing on any. Here I wait to see if Seth Rogen will offer advice to an up-and-coming writer (yes, me) or how Kristen Bell’s reshoots are going on COUPLES RETREAT (opening this October at a theater near you) or perhaps if John Mayer has clicked my link to the script I wrote about having problems peeing in public. (Seriously, John, it’s EXACTLY related to your tweet and it’s only like 20 pages long. Satisfaction guaranteed or your money back.)

Yes, class is in session at Twitter High and, as always, the cool rule the school. Maybe I’ll get that first response soon. After all, I need to get noticed eventually if I’m ever going to get a date to the prom.

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Want more Twitter insight, check out the 5 Reasons To Avoid* Twitter.

Or perhaps you need some fashion advice, check out these great selections for special occasions.

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