Twitter is probably the fastest moving communications platform ever created, not just in terms of instant messaging, but also in the way that it evolves. One of the more recent developments is that of Rotation Curation, #rocur. The current focus of Rotation Curation is very much socially driven, but could it mean a change in the way that businesses and companies communicate with consumers, or the way that governments talk to citizens?
Many consider Twitter to be the most revolutionary communications medium since Gutenburg invented the Movable Type; it is an instantaneous and concise multimedia platform that is eminently searchable, instantly linking otherwise unrelated people. Its beginnings were social, but it is being used progressively more by professionals and opinion leaders.
Twitter began in 2006 as a way for friendship groups to stay up to date with each other, but by 2007 it had hit the world stage and opinions were being broadcast across the globe. Conversations were started, topics began to ‘trend’ and the battle for the most followers kicked off. It has also become a serious, real-time coverage provider, broadcasting breaking news and world events.
In 2011 Sweden took Twitter another step forward. Bored of typecasts and misunderstandings the government tourist bureau and the Swedish Institute decided to create an official national account @sweden. This account was not designed to be run by an individual, but by a collective. Each week one citizen would be given control of the account to broadcast an uncensored expression of their individual experience of being Swedish.
This campaign designed to dispel stereotype generated a huge increase in followers and numerous copycat projects across the globe. Since January 2012 there are 33 cities, counties and countries giving individual residents the position of spokesman; Twitter has evolved from a platform for individuals to a platform for communities.
So where does the future lie? Rotation Curation has already moved across to Instagram, but the accounts in place are all unofficial. There is no government input or control and no censorship.
Surely this is a platform for democracy, for big ideas to be discussed and change to be made? Well, there have already been a few glitches, for example when @ireland got drunk at Oktoberfest, or when @sweden posted anti-Semitic comments.
Professionals and opinion leaders may be using Twitter as part of their day to day business now, but whether the corporations they work for choose to pick up this new form of communication remains to be seen, for many the risk may just be too high.