Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Philosophy of Twitter Handles

What's in a name? Apparently quite a bit.

I informally polled tweeps following my @airport_girl Twitter account and received a plethora of answers. Firstly, I'll dissect my handle for those not formally acquainted with me. I work for an airport, and possess a profound interest, boarding on obsession; alright, I'll admit, I am a downright aviation geek. The second half of my handle, is obvious, at least I think it is, since I am of the female persuasion.

The folks responding to my polling seemed to be equally split down the middle on what is the best practice for choosing a Twitter handle (screen name). My interpretation of the split is this: if you're looking to make a name for yourself, build your personal brand, or be completely transparent; the rule of thumb recommended is that your handle ought to be your name. On the other side of the coin, is this: if you're attempting to build a name for your company or enterprise, you're not necessarily wanting people to remember your name, or in my case, you like "kitschy" handles; picking adverbs, adjectives, company/organization/enterprise names, descriptors; basically anything else that isn't your birth given nomenclature is a-okay.

I actually tweet for two Twitter accounts. I began professionally tweeting for my employer in later 2008, @HIAairport, in order to build an online voice for the company. The resultant relationships and tweeting communities I was building and discovering through the professional account led me to create my personal account. And, it is strictly that, a personal tweet feed, admittedly at times it's my stream of consciousness feed. Depends on the day and how little caffeine I've consumed!

So, what are your thoughts on the matter. What was the impetus behind the Twitter handle you've elected? Did it have a grand overarching philosophy, or did you simply just want to go where everyone knows your name?

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Birth of a Resolution

Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors,
and let each new year find you a better man.
-Benjamin Franklin

January rolled in 3 days ago; and with it came the gambit of New Year's resolutions elected by innumerable persons worldwide. Pick your poison...I'm sure I've missed a few types.
  • Lose weight.
  • Pay off debt.
  • Break that bad habit.
  • Work harder.
  • Reduce stress.
  • Think smarter.
  • Be better.
Ever stop and wonder from where the tradition of picking a New Year's resolution originated? Four centuries ago. Babylonians observed vernal and autumnal equinoxes and resolved to pay off debts and returned borrowed goods. Next, Roman culture adopted the tradition by resolving good behavior to a god named Janus. Janus, eh? Hmm, now we can deduce where the month of January got it's name; for you see, Janus was the god of beginnings and endings. January of course, marks the fin of one year and the commencement of the next. However, I digress. Focus, Stef, focus.

Does this give you a clue as to what my resolution for 2010 may be? Try this on for size. I have resolved to become more purposeful, intentional and internally disciplined in my approach to life. I resolve to reduce among other things; my 'Squirrel!' moments, my ellipses projects, reduce the number of distractions in my world, in hope of increasing the quality of my interactions with others. These are my tactics, my strategy is quite complex and intimate, so while this may seem vague and without much scope; that fact you see, is intentionally so.

Are you resolved? What will you do to make sure you're actually improving the quality of your life in 2010, or improving the quality of the lives of those you hold dear? Is that resolution of yours strategic and life-altering; are you committed to it? Or, is it merely a vague thought that you suppose you may get to one of these next 362 days? I challenge you to not be a member of the 35% of our population that will fore go their resolution before they even implement it.