Friday, January 30, 2009

Twestivals – an example of the value of Twitter?

In reading stories about Twitter, such as those that appeared after Flight 1549, it was interesting to read the comments – some proclaiming that this was validation of the greatness that is Twitter, while others criticized the stories and comments for being a sad attempt at justifying Twitter and its value.

I’m still new to Twitter, been using it for a few weeks, and as such, I’m still figuring things out. I’m enjoying the experience and learning about twitter – and other topics via the tweets from those that I follow. So right now, my first impressions are quite positive. But, it still seems that its worthwhile to ask questions such as:

  • What’s the value?
  • Why should anyone care about using it?
  • How does this make my life any better?
  • What difference can it make?

An interesting event that I came across today was a Twestival – where a community is coming together to organize a fundraiser to be held on the same day across 100+ cities. Which is a daunting and complex task. The charity being supported is charity: water – a group that provides clean drinking water to impoverished communities.

Seems like a good event – and a good cause. I’ve bought tickets to attend the local event, looking to see firsthand how things will go on the 12th.

However, I’m curious as to how twitter has helped in organizing the event. I’ve started to follow some of the associated twitter accounts – looking to gain a better understanding of how they are using twitter to help plan and generate attention and demand for the event.

I’ve noticed that each of the cities hosting a fundraiser that day has a blog – detailing the event and encouraging people to attend. So at a minimum, they are using some other social media tools to bring the event together.

For the organizers – I wonder – did Twitter help you plan? Did it help you build awareness? Has it helped you to keep each of the events on message? Do you think you would have accomplished similar results using other tools? Could you have done so as effectively? How would the cost compare using Twitter vs. other tools? Would it have been as successful if it was a Blestival or a Fastival?

Looking forward to the event and reading about the success achieved across all 100+ cities.


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