Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Twitter Behaviour

Gardens of the World with Audrey Hepburn - a DVD containing all eight episodes of the programme that I received last Christmas based on the premise that since I like the actress and gardening I'm likely to enjoy it.


You know what, the gift giver was right, I really enjoyed it! Terribly dated of course complete with not so great cinematography however it was nice to see the lovely actress alive, looking elegant as ever, eloquent, and talking about gardens. She was entertaining to watch as she presented the show and was fascinating to get a glimpse of gardens in what is, or at least strangely now considered a bygone era (I feel old now but yes I acknowledge that 1990 is indeed a long time ago). I may or may not watch them again but while I did it was...loverly!



After watching the last episode, my phone buzzed a notification from Twitter. I checked it out then looked at the latest feeds and lo and behold I saw another unnecessary selfie (is it ever necessary?) from a notorious selfie poster. Harmless and usually easy enough to ignore but not the sort that one would think Audrey Hepburn would approve of. Which made me think further, if Audrey Hepburn were still alive or of relative youth in this era what would she think of social media, especially Twitter?

Audrey Hepburn - being the epitome of ultimate elegance and grace. The poster lady of style and class. The legend is probably much bigger than the truth but such a mystique is now likely to stay with her name and image for all eternity (which in turn makes her 'alive' forever).

Would she use Twitter, and what of her opinion on those that use it?

Let's talk Twitter Behaviour! And yes we have an account and we use it.

But first of all, how do we use it ourselves and what is our usual Twitter behaviour?

Mostly accessed on the train on our way to and from work, on our mobile phones, and at other times too of course especially when the need to 'fiddle with a gadget' arises.


There is an auto feed that puts up a tweet every time there is a new post on this blog and occasionally from our other photo only blog -Alternative Eden 365.

If our phone buzzes due to notification when we are tagged in conversations, or from a message we engage and respond as soon as we could.

Mostly used via our mobile phones, much less frequent via a desktop PC or a laptop unless when sharing photos which we occasionally find the time to do

There are days that we don't access it at all.

We're not very good at following stories and updates from people who use it very regularly due to periods that we don't use it all, plus the streaming of the feed is very quick and statuses can quickly disappear.

Although we tried during the early days to tweet random status updates (naively thinking that it is and should be the done thing) it is unlikely or rather infrequently that we do so now. Even rarer are posting of selfies.

When invoked we do enjoy interacting and engaging in conversations. Occasionally we even start it.



Twitter is a very powerful form of social media and seems to be going from strength to strength. Some people love it, and on the other end of the spectrum loathe and detest even the very idea of using it. 

It is a very useful tool to use to communicate and interact with others, almost like a telephone. But like a telephone it's all up to the owner how to use it, as often or as little, and how much to reveal and divulge about oneself to whoever is on the other end of the line, which can be thousands depending on the amount of followers.

Do we like it or loathe it? Neither. It is a tool, we use it when necessary and when impulse arises. A product of contemporary times. 

It is however the noisiest social media at the moment and going through the feed can often feel like wading through a vibrant and at the same time chaotic marketplace. But again it's up to the user when to shut out the noise and distance oneself for some refreshing solitude and peace.

We may not use it relatively as often as others but we have met and interacted with so many lovely people through it and fortunately have rarely encountered anything or anyone untoward. The thing that we appreciate most though is that it makes us very accessible. That we can be contacted and spoken to easily through it without having to divulge our numbers and personal details. A tag with a tweet and our phone buzzes!

Going back to Audrey Hepburn and Twitter behaviour, what is the connection between them both? A matter of elegance!


Twitter has a reputation for being a portal for heated conversations but what amuses, and occasionally bemuses is how some avid users can quickly lose guard and tweet out things that are...let's just say the sort that Ms. Hepburn (or at least her mystique) would not even think of doing. Yes, even the usually mild mannered and gentle plant crowd can slip up and tweet about things like: their divorce and bitter sentiments towards the other party, contraception choices and past STD's, intimate anatomical problems, family issues that are really best kept private, excrement and body fluids, the extreme obvious, ego massaging (certain book authors are notorious for this), the endless selfies even at times when dignity is compromised...

But there you go, that's free speech for you. Not elegant yes but generally harmless apart for ones reputation. And why should one care about what potentially Ms. Hepburn, the queen of elegance could think of it all anyway?

Because in reality I bet a lot do care, even if subconsciously. 

Just bear in mind that whatever you put out there reflects on you. And that what may be about being open, venting out and sharing a problem can quickly turn into an unsavoury personal association that lingers. What one may think as trendy and fun to do often can quickly be regarded as nothing more than just plain narcissism. And that what one may think as a good way to demonstrate sociability and popularity can end up highlighting loneliness instead.

Speaking of unsavoury association, I remember going to a party once and a friend pointed out to a guy in the crowd and said that he had a botched vasectomy. How did my friend know? From Twitter of course, from himself seeking sympathy then. Fair play but very silly. Fast forward a year later and with the same friend we bumped into a guy I didn't recognise at first, but was instantly reminded when my companion leaned and whispered to me 'The Botched Vasectomy Guy'... One of the reasons why elegant and careful Twitter behaviour does matter.

Back to Audrey Hepburn, will she personally use Twitter had if she is still alive today? She was very protective of her privacy then and kept away from the public as much as she could so probably not. Her PA will probably do on her behalf as well as her management firm, albeit very carefully. She might be coaxed to use Facebook though, albeit with a strictly curated group of friends only!



And I end this post by saying that I am chuffed that somehow I am able to tie in an old TV gardening programme presented by a legendary actress with the oh so now social media that is Twitter!

Mark :-)

27 comments :

  1. No, I don't believe Audrey Hepburn would have used Twitter. I know each of us has our own preferences and addictions, and even though I periodically try to post more stuff on Twitter, I've never gotten into it. I will admit, though, that I have a bit of an infatuation going with Instagram at the moment...

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    1. Each type of social of media has their own fans Gerhard, I'm glad there are choices out there if not too many. I've heard good things about Instagram, only thing is I don't really take many photos with my phone.

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  2. I'm not surprised you're chuffed! I was impressed all the way through this post. I can't possibly comment on whether Audrey Hepburn would have used Twitter. I use it. I rather like it as I learn a lot from some of the links people post and although some users don't like pointless "good mornings" and local weather forecasts, I do because I'm self-employed and don't get to walk into an office having "good mornings" thrown at me by colleagues. I dislike seeing selfies on social media and I am driven to distraction by tell-it-all users like the botched snip guy. I do love Audrey though.

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    1. Thanks Sarah! I enjoyed making this post as there was a bit more creative twisting involved in it. Everyone loves Audrey it seems! :)

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  3. What an enjoyable read. I would not have discovered your blog without Twitter.

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    1. Thanks Celia :) hopefully we can catch up later this year!

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  4. You have much racier Twitter feed than I do - I've never had news of vasectomies or STDs! But as you say, it's very much a tool, and if someone posts too many selfies or is too self-promoting, you can just unfollow them. One tip: Twitter is fantastically useful in traffic jams - if you get stuck on some everlasting tailback, tap in #M25 (or whatever) and all sorts of news will come up. Also the traffic authorities answer your queries almost immediately! (Only use when not driving, of course - but in this situation you are unlikely to be moving)

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    1. Thanks for that Alexandra, very handy tip! I haven't thought about using Twitter before to check for congestion.

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  5. I'm really still getting used to Twitter. It's one of those things that could become horrendously addictive without too much trying I suspect, fun though.

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    1. It could be a slippery slope Jessica, careful :)

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  6. Impressive connection you made there sir Mark! Ms Hepburn probably would not use Twitter personally but if she were still acting might have a social media presence taken care of by an assistant. My blog posts auto populate to twitter as it was a choice in the blog platform so I created an account but haven't spent enough time playing with Twitter so it's still a bit confusing to me.

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    1. Why thank you kind Sir Peter :) social media is a great complement to ones blog. You don't even have to be active on all of them as long as auto feed is on but dipping in every so often doesn't harm either.

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  7. Great post, I enjoyed every bit. As for Twitter I'm there but very little, in fact I just looked and since the very beginning of my tweeting career I've done a total of....163! Ha.

    I went to a wedding a couple of years ago and the church had several signs up for a youth group meeting. The headline..."does God tweet?"...

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    1. Thanks Loree! you don't need to tweet that much I think, and I quite like it that you don't as it adds to your mystique ;)

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  8. I remember enjoying that garden series way back when. Twitter is another resource for gardening information and the alerts help if I haven't checked in lately. I just won a book from Timber Press by sharing their links so I'm pretty happy with it so far! You won't find personal details like those mentioned on my feed.

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    1. I saw that tweet Shirley, congratulations! And I can't imagine you saying such details there, you're too elegant for that :)

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  9. I received that same DVD years ago and also loved it. I'm not sure it made the move with us 4 years ago when I cleaned out our old house like a madwoman - I'll have to look around for it as it would be nice to hear Ms. Hepburn again. I don't Tweet or feel a need to. While I value my social media contacts in blog-dom and Pinterest, constant contact and the interruptions they impose would drive me crazy (although I did appreciate your description of Twitter as a trip through a vibrant and chaotic marketplace, even if a little of that is also a lot for me). My biggest concern with social media is whether it is replacing face-to-face contacts for many people. It may be old-fashioned to say so, but these are more real to me than many of the posts that dominate social media, which often are either carefully constructed to present a particular image or, worse yet, simply regurgitate verbal garbage that distracts without adding value. Maybe I'm just a social media hum-bug...

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    1. You have very valid points and sound reasons why you avoid it Kris, and that's perfectly fine ad totally understandable. I still encounter loads of people who refrain from using any form of social media and to be honest their lives are none less richer by doing so, if not more :)

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  10. She was such a lovely, elegant looking woman. Brilliantly written post btw really enjoyed :)

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  11. Twitter account, totally neglected; ditto Google+; FB sucks all the time i am willing to give to social media. Now excuse me while I look up 'Roman Holiday' to order on Netflix.

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    1. That should be easy Ricki, and much more fun :)

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  12. A most interesting and well written post. I'm not sure whether Audrey Hepburn, or come to think of it Princess Grace of Monaco would have used Twitter, but if they had done they would have used it stylishly and with a touch of class. Certainly no selfies or revealing too much information! Your Twitter feed sounds a lot more livelier than mine :)

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    1. Thanks Anna :) amazing what you can pick up just by quickly browsing through your Twitter feed...

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  13. I didn't know such a tv programme existed! I never got in to Twitter, but browse Facebook when I'm procrastinating or bored. 5% of the things I read are useful, the rest a waste of time, and I usually wonder why on earth people post about some of the stuff they do... Although a botched vasectomy is a new one!

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    1. It boggles the mind Amy as to why....

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  14. Ha! We got the same DVD based on the same premise this this Christmas but have yet to watch it.

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