Twitter Rocks My World!

Earlier this week, a couple of Tweets from Brooke Burke @brookeburke appeared in my Twitter stream. Dancing with the Stars was about to start, and at 45 minutes until showtime she was tweeting, that her daughter wouldn’t get out of her makeup chair – and then she posted a photo of said daughter in said chair. Then she retweeted a photo from her wardrobe stylist, asking which earrings she should wear on the show. Then she tweeted links to the stylist and her hair and makeup artists, and thanked them all, calling them the best glam squad in the world. And earlier in the day she tweeted about her pre-show meal, about her daughter meeting Taylor Swift at rehearsal, and watching Rod Stewert rehearse – it was a continual stream of backstage news.

Then right after the show, she tweeted… “Shocking show tonight! DWTS! Very emotional. Don’t miss it!!!”

And it was then that it hit me how much my world, and the world in general, has changed in the last five years.

A little over five years ago I was all wrapped up in Brooke’s previous show, Rock Star: INXS and covertly writing teasers for ROCKBAND.COM. Doing it secretly because I didn’t want the producers to know who I was, and not allow me access to the tapings. I hooked up with other “spoiler” kings and everything took off! It was a fabulous ride! 50,000 unique visitors a day coming to my site was great! All those people wanted the scoop, and the spoiler gods and I gave them something they couldn’t get anywhere else. We wrote about the music, about the performances, AND what happened in between. We wrote about what you saw on TV, and about what you didn’t. The next year the traffic doubled, I got backstage access, and I shot a backstage documentary. I remember it all – and it was fabulous!

But guess what? Only a few years later, Brooke Burke is doing my old job. Now she’s the one posting teasers and backstage images, and giving the world that glimpse behind the scenes at a favorite TV show.

Twitter has seriously changed the world. It’s easy to underestimate its power – it seems so trivial and superficial at first glance. But you can bet, if there’s breaking news, the very first place I’m looking is Twitter. Real people tweeting in real time – how much closer to the ground can you get? And even minor local events get coverage on Twitter. It’s not just the big things, deemed important enough by the media to make the cut – it’s a little bit of everything – major and minor, important and not-so-important.

I loved 2005 and writing about Rock Star: INXS and in 2006, Rock Star: Supernova. But if the show was still on today, things would be very different. Every single member of the studio audience could conceivably tweet in real time, after each performance. There would be no spoiler gods, but rather a rambling Twitter stream of comments from many voices – one of which would undoubtedly be Brooke Burke. And how cool is that?!

As much as I loved 2005, I think 2010 is even better. And I certainly didn’t see Twitter coming – so while I don’t know what comes next, I’m excited to see what does!

10 Replies to “Twitter Rocks My World!”

  1. Exactly Mark, really easy to dismiss it. And it *may* be a passing fad, since we’ll probably be onto something entirely new five years from now. But that doesn’t mean Twitter hasn’t changed the world in some pretty significant ways. Yes, we’ll be onto something entirely new in five years, but it will evolve from where we are now – we won’t be going back to a pre-Twitter world!

  2. twitter, fb and social media in gereral are interesting – I love it for a lot of the same reasons you do…

    But I also understand the critique, that it is tapping into our our greatest flaw, narcisism…it all is a bit, everyone putting out there, what they are doing, thinking, their reactions…to their daily events, trivial or newsworthy…

    Does this constant stream of consciousness evolve us, or is it the root of all evil!? (I say that a bit tongue in cheek;)

    Personally – I don’t think too hard about it – like all social media, I look at it pragmatically – what can it do for me – I use it for promotion, and for information sourcing – yes I check it for news, or mood on news as it were…

    And it is interesting how much life has changed in the last 5yrs…mine has changed both subtly(overall) and dramatically in a certain fashion…for me, from rock star, rock band, spoilers, groupie madness, to now…I don’t think technology caused it, but there were definitely triggers, and for me, having it end up so heavily in digital photography, using social media pretty heavily – it has definitely all come together!

    I often think, if things were a bit tilted – not just what would Rock Star viewing/tapings be like – but can you imagine the live show madness, if we were in the midst of the 2006-2007 INXS tour, and Twitter was there? And we all had iphones and androids? the ride would have had a bit of a hyper drive feel to it…

  3. We didn’t have iPhones back then, but we did have phones that took photos and that could access the Internet – we had the tools in 2005, but we sure use them in different and more explosive way in 2010. Could Brooke Burke have been posting a continual stream of backstage news during Rock Star? Absolutely! But it took Twitter and five additional years of evolution for that to happen…

  4. And Elisa, you are so right about the madness around the INXS concerts in 2006 – if you had added Twitter to that mix?! It would have been really different! Watching The Social Network a few weeks ago, I was struck by the timeline – it was so recent – and yet the world has changed so much since then. Same thing in the case of Twitter, I think.

  5. I love your blog post, Cheryl. It made me reflect on how wonderful and truly special the RSINXS and RSSN experiences were. If this had happened today… Things would have been much different, for sure. Would they have been better? Worse? I don’t know. It’s hard to say… Would we have made long life friends today with Twitter and Facebook, like we did 5 years ago with the spoiler gods and RBL? Again, hard to say.

    At any rate, I’m grateful we got to experience RSINXS and RSSN the way that we did… But it certainly makes me wondering how things would and could have been if Twitter and Facebook had been as present back then as they are today!

  6. You’re right Caroline, we might not have gotten as close – because even with 50,000 unique visitors a day at ROCKBAND.COM, the core group got really close, really fast – it felt smaller than it was, in a way. But if you’re talking Twitter? We would have certainly found each other, because of the subject matter of the Tweets – but if we weren’t in the *contained* environment of a forum where everyone made a choice to be there? We might have been passing ships – moving on to the next thing – instead of forming a community and evolving into real friends. I also think that the anonymous format of a forum allowed some of the members to really fly their rock and roll freak flag – and if they’d been limited to only Twitter and Facebook, and posting under their real names, they never would have gone as far – which would have been unfortunate, because it was fun! So yeah, the evolution and the changes are both good and bad, and as junkyardmessiah tweeted earlier today, they “were indeed special times, that cannot be recreated!” Guess I’m just grateful for what we had, and excited about what comes next, no matter what that is!

  7. I feel a strange mix of technophile and luddite in me: I’ve never enjoyed such online communication as I have with RBL: and that’s still where it’s at, regardless of facebook or twitter. The social networks like these are the tabloids to our RBL journal, complete with member’s notes, comments, reviews, activities, all wrapped in an INXS fan mag cover. Blink, and I’ll miss a tweet, or even worse not give a fig. However, a comment left on our community forum holds more personal weight because I trust the source and the likely responses.
    Even if we were back 30 or 40 years ago, pen palling each other over this with our own printed magazine, that would be just as enthralling.

  8. You’re absolutely right Roger, Twitter or Facebook will NEVER be a completely satisfying substitute for our forum at RBL, or really any forum. They’re great as an addition, but I would never want to give up the deeper, meatier, more focussed socializing we do in a forum setting.

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