What Would Twitter Do?

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For the second-last week of What Would Twitter Do? I have compiled some quotes about Twitter from some great contemporary folks and some great folks who were once contemporary but now are dead. I hope you enjoy this selection.

- Sheila Heti

“I pretty much throw everything up on Twitter that makes me giggle and I don’t think I can use in my stand up. It actual helps clear the way to focus on some richer ideas that can be turned into stand up. Getting those silly non-sequiturs out of the way helps get the brain rolling. The fact that you have to convey an elaborate idea in 140 characters helps you become a better joke writer as well, learning the economy of words, brevity and all that. The tweets I like to read are usually silly or fun. I don’t go to Twitter to learn someone’s opinion on South Sudan.” —Chris Locke (@chrislockefun)

“It is probably the consequence of the modern world, which is based on motion.” —Marcel Duchamp 

“I think the best Tweeters do one thing. They have one concept they are exploring, one idea, one question, one statistic, one turn… You can anticipate the content. Some tweeters go so far into their interests that it’s always fresh. In other words, consistency is sexy, predictability isn’t.” —Lemondhound/Sina Queyras (@lemonhound)

“The worst is when the energy of Twitter, succinct 140-character expressions, is exploited for narrative story-telling spanning multiple tweets. The best Twitter works like good eavesdropping, when you walk by a conversation and hear just a sentence that you’ll continue to think about until you get where you’re going.” —Spencer Madsen (@spencermadsen)

“Point to something interesting, but away from where everyone else is looking.” —Christian Bok (@christianbok)

“The social and the ego are the two idols.” —Simone Weil

“Twitter is all part of the pressure on writers now to be ‘visible’ which I absolutely detest. I hate being photographed, and it annoys me that websites always want a picture of me with everything I write, but I particularly dislike the feeling that if I’m not on Twitter, people won’t share my work or read it, so it’s fear of missing out that keeps me on there. Obviously, this ties in with the financial collapse of the media industry. It’s all a fucking mess, basically, and terrible for the kind of introverted personality that is often attracted to write.” Juliet Jacques (@julietjacques)

“What’s great about this country is that America started the tradition where the richest consumers buy essentially the same thing as the poorest. You can be watching TV and see Coca-Cola, and you know that the President drinks Coke, Liz Taylor drinks Coke, and just think, you can drink Coke too. A Coke is a Coke and no amount of money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is drinking. All the Cokes are the same and all the Cokes are good. Liza Taylor knows it, the President knows it, the bum knows it, and you know it.” —Andy Warhol 

Week 1: Kimmy Walters

Week 2: Kate Zambreno

Week 3: Teju Cole

Week 4: Mira Gonzales

Week 5: Tao Lin

Week 6: Christian Lorentzen

Week 7: Patricia Lockwood

Week 8: Crylenol / Sadvil

Week 9: Various

Week 9 ½: Melville House

Week 9 ¾: Roxane Gay

Week 10: Kenneth Goldsmith