I surpassed a Twitter milestone this past weekend. It happened at a weird time but a fitting time. I was tracking strong storms all Saturday afternoon from home and after the wxbabies woke up from a nap we went to the pool. This is a summertime ritually at my house weekends means pool time with the family. Another ritually is me tweeting weather whenever it is happening. So in between jumps by the kids into the pool I went to check my iPhone for updates on the weather. I replied to a few questions quickly and re-tweeted a few reports before I realized I had crossed over 100,000. So what was my 100,000th Tweet? It was a re-tweet of severe weather reported by one of my followers.
Most of my day was spent send sending out warnings and radar grabs like this.
So the question is should this be a big deal? Is it just a number? Do I Tweet too much?
I don’t think the number by itself is a big deal it’s more of a symbol. It’s a symbol of all the replies I try to give to every weather question that is asked of me. It’s a symbol of all the severe weather warnings that I always tweet for my area. It’s a symbol of all the retweets of severe weather pictures or reports I get. Which are important so people can know something is actually happening. Because you see the tweets I send out are only as good as the tweets I receive. What I mean by that is my followers are important to my work. They are a huge network of spotters which without their reports, pictures, images and questions I may miss something or not have the ground truth I need to warn others. Yes even others not on Twitter!
Quick story on how Twitter has been such a valuable tool to me.
Back in the very early morning hours of March 2nd 2012 a tornado touched down in Northeast Charlotte in the Reedy Creek Neighborhood. There was no official warning. I knew we had something brewing on radar but the signature was not clear right away. Luckily for me I was working late and doing cut-ins and streaming live online incase we got severe weather. About 2:15am I started getting Tweets from followers in that area about power outages and the cable going out. I knew both from the radar signature and reports from my valuable Twitter followers that we had damage occurring. Without those tweets I would not have had the confidence to go on the air right away and warn people of a possible tornado. Now unfortunately it was 2:30am and not many people were able to see those warnings, but many did thanks to the people who follow me. This is just one example of many on how Twitter has made my job easier and made me better at what I do.
Of all the 100,000 Tweets which one stands out? Was it a tornado warning? Was it a personal forecast? Was it me Live Tweeting Twister? While those were all valuable and important there could only be one Tweet that will forever be my favorite.
So to answer my own question. Are 100,000 Tweets meaningful or meaningless? No, 100,000 tweets aren’t meaningful…it only takes just one Tweet to be meaningful.