Saturday, September 5, 2009

Pictures are worth 140 characters

The Monitor is ever mindful that the Gentle Reader may not necessarily be informed of the latest in social or internet fads, and as a courtesy to its members, would like to take a moment to bring those readers not familiar with the networking shorthand known as “Twitter” up to speed. The brief missives known as “tweets” enliven most workstations and help keep friends and associates updated throughout the day of one’s whereabouts or occupations. ("It's not as easy as it sounds," says Mrs. Hall. "You're limited to only speaking about 140 of the most interesting characters you know, and that's often hard to do." Mr. Hall usually sends her off to get him a headache powder at this time. )
Although it is called “Twitter”, it might have just as easily been named “Dither”, “Babble” or “Cackle”, for whether your bon mots are verbal or electronic, unless you are a virtual Noel Coward of the keyboard, chances are your tweets will wind up being as mundane as your deeds.
Punctuating these little lines are sometimes links to a service known as “Twitpic” which allows tweeters to upload photos they have taken “on the fly”, so to speak, and share them immediately with other tweeters. The Monitor has posted some of these on Twitter in the past, and for the benefit of those with neither the option nor the desire to sign up, here are a few of the images from the last few months:

"Looks like one of those puzzles 'See how many former presidents you can find in this picture!' At least you can tell she's a reader... "
Scenes like this are rarely posted; it’s not that the Monitor has any restriction in place that prohibits it from publishing pictures of the Hall, it’s just that sometimes it’s wiser not to invite criticism from other sources; i.e. relatives or helpful neighbors.

"Death takes a holiday- you'd think he could afford better wheels."
Taken one day coming out of Swaby’s after dinner. For one brief moment, Mr. Hall considered the possibility that perhaps he had gotten some bad cherries in his Manhattan.

"Vox Populi? Spotted at Liberty and Spencer Streets in Syracuse; this is one grassroots movement we hope won't catch on."
Just one of those situations for which the editor is grateful the reporters keep their cameras on them at all times.

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