Twitter for Teens [Teen Article]

Gema is an 18-year old from Miami, FL. She loves reading and writing young adult fiction and claims to pass out in the presence of sterile wit.
twitter for teens
Twitter is it. Everyone and everything from celebrities, small businesses to news channels have a twitter account. The idea behind this social network is simple enough. It begs the questions: “What are you doing?” The 140-character answers have continued to increase with no sign of slowing down in the future. The Twitter demographic is described as “young adults”. Surprisingly enough, these are mostly between the ages of 18 through 34. The young adults between ages 12 through 17 only make up 1% of the total. (The former making up 47% of the total.)  But this doesn’t mean that 12 through 17 years olds can’t find Twitter useful!


Keeping Up with Friends:

Summer vacation is only exciting the first couple of weeks. After an excruciating year, students have two months free of homework, projects and oral presentations. But within two weeks of freedom comes the boredom. Cable television is infomercial central and there is only so much interests that Youtube can generate before your eyes start watering. By asking “what are you doing?”, Twitter breaks the ice between old classmates.. You might find out about a cool job that someone has, or a new vacation spot in your city that you were unaware of. Or even interesting places to travel with your family for the weekend. The great thing about Twitter is that the majority of the users don’t use the website, but mobile apps; which means that you’re most likely to find out about things outside of your four walls than you would through Facebook or Myspace.

Trending Topic:

Perhaps one of the most interesting and unique features on Twitter is their Trending Topics list, updated frequently. If your time is spent living out fantasies about Robert Pattinson, this is an ideal way to keep up with popular news without getting distracted. The trending topics list shows what is being tweeted the most. When the results to Iran’s election were announced, the tag “#iranelection” quickly made the list and stayed there for weeks thanks to the teens in Iran that risk their lives on a daily basis just to get their message out. Farrah Fawcett’s death made the list and that same day, Michael Jackson’s death caused for Twitter to go “over capacity” for hours because of the large amount of tweets. So even if you live in a cave, the trending topics list will slither its way to you.

Celebrity/News:

As heartbreaking as it may be for me to admit this, teens are still obsessed with celebrities. The lives of the rich, famous and beautiful are as mystical as ancient Egyptian predictions. Disguised as a simple publicity venue, Twitter is a social network that is widely used by celebrities. Teens can follow people like Ashton Kutcher and Lindsey Lohan as they go out for breakfast or brush their teeth. Hopefully teens will realize that these celebrities have normal lives through some of these incredibly dull tweets. However, for those that are interested in current events and news that are important but don’t quite make the trending topics lists, following channels like CNN can prove beneficial. They have many branches and some of their anchors will tweet about news that they find shocking or sad before it even hits the air. Best of all, no commercials!

Opportunities:

If done with a careful eye, Twitter can be a good place to search for opportunities. Small businesses post 140-character WANTED signs. Personally, I have found out many writing gigs by simply searching for them. Those interested in acting can follow legit agencies and channels (such as Nickelodeon) who post open auditions. Same goes for musicians. However, this must be done carefully. For every interesting person to follow there is a fake account or a pornbot. Always exercise caution.

Personally, Twitter is my favorite social network. It doesn’t waste time with pleasantries like the Myspace and Facebook profiles. It goes straight to the point: who are you and what are you doing? It opens the doors to opportunity and curiosity and is ideal for anyone interested in learning about others’ opinions and current events in general. If all else fails, you can always just follow the cute guy from the football team on Twitter and not get arrested for stalking.

Statistics: http://www.istrategylabs.com/twitter-2009-demographics-and-statistics/

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