Seriously, why Twitter?

I’m not a user of Twitter and might only become one if I thought it might be a good way of reporting breaking news during, say, a speech at a conference or something like that. Any other uses seriously seem pointless, particularly in healthcare.

I’m particularly disturbed by the news last month that the chief resident at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit provided live tweets of a surgery to remove a cancerous tumor from a kidney. Then, last week, another Henry Ford resident Twittered a robotic hysterectomy.

I know the Twitterers weren’t the actual surgeons doing the cutting, but seriously, didn’t they have anything better to do? And unless they were close friends or family of the patients, didn’t the people following the updates have anything better to do with their time?

As I watched so many news outlets breathlessly report on the popularity of Twitter in recent weeks, I couldn’t help thinking that once the mainstream media and non-techies started using this decidedly geeky application, Twitter may already be jumping the shark. A day or so after I first had this thought, I heard someone on WGN Radio in Chicago say Twitter had jumped the shark. And then, last week, The Daily Show had this great satire of Twitter.

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Still, I think this person offers the best commentary on Twitter I’ve seen to date.