Which is More Useful: Twitter or Facebook?
Twitter or Facebook?
Last year, if you asked me, I would have said Facebook was so much better than Twitter. It's not really limited as far as status updates, it is easy to navigate, it's very user-friendly, and EVERYONE has it.
But I started blogging after having my third baby, and when one of my blog posts was featured on BlogHer, I decided I needed a Twitter account to promote it. Since I've opened it, I've spent an equal amount of time jumping in and checking tweets as I do checking good ol' Facebook. As a writer I am fairly long-winded, and it is sometimes difficult to limit myself to 140 characters. But it does force me to be concise.
I've decided it's time to do a side-by-side comparison of the features of each.
Image: Twitter by JoshSemans via Flickr and Facebook by MindFreeze via Flickr
10. Parties. I might have to say Twitter wins this one, because I've never even heard anyone say "Pop by the Facebook party from 6 to 7." They might be out there, but I've never been invited, so screw them. However, it's only a slight edge, because at the last Twitter party I went to, I felt as if I was a vapid version of myself, limited to "cool!" and "way to go!" Kudos to Twitter-ers (tweeters? The twitterverse?) for throwing it, but they need to start hiring professional party planners like the rest of us.
9. Photos. I love taking pictures and sharing them. I don't care if you've seen my baby 870 times, you haven't seen her like THIS. Facebook lets me upload lots and lots (and lots) of pictures, whereas on Twitter, I have to choose the best one. You might argue that quality over quantity is better, but I suck at making decisions, so I give this one to Facebook.
8. Closing out a photo. I added this in because I LOVE the cool ability to tap on the picture and make it disappear on the Twitter mobile app. It's the little things, dude, and it makes me feel like I have a super power. Tap. Tap tap.
7. Anonymity. Twitter has it WAY over Facebook here. I tend to blog anonymously. I like it that way. But if I want to share what I blog, I either have to use Twitter (where I can go by whatever name I want) or make up a completely fake profile on Facebook. Not that I've ever done that.
6. Word count. Word count. Word effing count. While Twitter does force you to be concise and to the point, which as a writer is a nice challenge, I LIKE DESCRIPTIVE LANGUAGE! I grew up reading novels and literature, and I'd like to know that someone has a six foot long, slithery, man-eating anaconda that just digested three mice and is missing somewhere in the house as opposed to a "lost pet" before I come visit. Facebook all the way.
5. Hashtags. Ok, Facebook has these now, too, and while they're funny and make great sub-text, I really don't care what's "trending." This one ties out for me, because I rarely remember to use them.
4. Speed. No, not the drug. I thought I could pop on and off Facebook as quickly as Twitter... but the news feed on Facebook includes links with visible photos and everyone knows I love photos. I can skip by a written link, but a link with an awesome photo? Sometimes you need to plug in for a quick-see, and I just get lost in all the links until 30 minutes has gone by, so I have to give this one to Twitter.
3. Privacy. Ok, other than the fact that you can hide your identity behind a cool moniker, the whole purpose of Twitter is to have your stuff "out there." While I would caution that nothing on the Internet is EVER truly private, Facebook takes this one hands down.
2. Friends vs. Followers. Again, the point of Twitter is to have things "out there," but I like the idea that someone has to request to be your friend on Facebook. I used to worry about the bad karma of denying someone friendship, but then I remember they can always follow me on Twitter. This one goes by a slight margin to Facebook.
1. Connectivity. This is the number one reason I use social media. I am fairly shy and somewhat socially inept in person, but I can converse liberally on both Facebook and Twitter. The biggest difference for me is that Facebook is more about my personal friends and family, whereas Twitter is about celebrities and people I'd LIKE to know.
By the numbers, it's a tie.
But I love my huge, sprawling, crazy family... I love hearing about their days and seeing their 50 pictures of cousin Jack's new baby. I love watching them post embarrassing pictures from the '80s and tag each other. I love "liking" them. So until they all suddenly decide to have a Twitter party, I've got to admit, I'm still a (mostly) Facebook girl.
How about you?
I'm a 40 something year old with two tweens and a new baby. This is my effort to keep my sanity after leaving the workforce, taking up breastfeeding, and managing the kids. I'm mostly failing at it.