I just started learning how to browse various social medias such as Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter since I started taking the course of Mass Communication in Public Health. I find all of the social media platforms very interesting but I find Twitter the most unique and unconventional.
Here are my top three reasons why I like Twitter best:
Twitter is very easy to use and browse. Its simplicity stems from the lack of various applications, only focusing on 140 characters a post. It’s user-friendliness makes it very manageable for anyone to use, and it also encourages creative thinking. Many comedic accounts use Twitter as a means to share funny one-liners. A famous account with 1 million followers, uses these one liners to make funny statements, hitting thousands of retweets and favorites.
2. Unique Conventions
Twitter accounts post thoughts, opinions, statements in less than 140 characters. Unlike other social media accounts where posting is liberal, Twitter chooses to have a very specific structure and yet thrives in such a unique field of its own. It is especially useful in our world where we are constantly bombarded with information, and Twitter condenses such information for us in a digestible manner that is easy to understand. At a glance, we can learn from many different accounts the most recent news, happenings, and feelings of our friends, leaders, and even strangers.
In Singapore, the National Environment Agency (NEA) has an account that constantly posts and updates the current reading of PSI readings. It is an effective means of disseminating information to Singaporeans, especially since smartphone penetration in Singapore is nearly 100%, and many of these people have social media accounts.
This is vital in this part of the world since Singapore is very vulnerable to haze. Haze is defined as an atmospheric phenomenon where dust, smoke and other dry particles obscure the clarity of the sky. The severity of the haze is expressed in number such that 0–50 Good 51–100 Moderate 101–200 Unhealthy. These numbers signal to Singaporeans how they should carry out activities. For example, a reading above 100 would require Singaporeans to stay indoors as far as possible.
Every summer between the months of May to July, Singapore usually suffers terrible haze that can affect the health of Singaporean. This haze is normal brought by the wind from the neighboring country like Indonesia. The haze is created by irresponsible parties that burns forest wildly to create land for palm plantation. Therefore, this Twitter account helps to spread information to keep Singaporeans safe as a health advisory for the public.
Thus, in conclusion, Twitter has many functions that are suitable for even those who are not technically-inclined, yet still brings a sense of entertainment and connection that we seek in social media. Using these connections and networks, health advisories can use Twitter as an effective means of public health communication to save lives.