Twitter, the Library of Congress and Doc Holliday

There are certain things in history that by name or date we all know by heart. For example, if someone says Hiroshima, then the picture of a mushroom cloud usually pops into everyone’s minds. If someone says December 1941, most people think of ships and planes in the Pacific. Apparently, in years from now when people say tweets, instead of thinking of cute little birds, they will think of Twitter.

From now on, the U.S. Library of Congress will archive tweets from the social media website Twitter. This decision from the officials of this 210-year-old institution made this decision because it takes away some of the elitist feelings that some have toward history. This feeling might come from the fact that often, only the rich, famous or infamous of the world get talked about. Now that tweets will be included, every person, no matter their station or prestige will be put into history forever.

At first when I read this article, I thought of how much social media has impacted and influenced our culture. Who would have thought a few years ago that anyone, let alone the Library of Congress, would actually care about the day to day musings of someone like me or the countless celebrities and politicians that use Twitter? It seems somewhat unfathomable that these 140 word micro-blogs would actually make an impact on this country. This just shows that even when a new technology seems like just a fad that will go away as fast as it came, it might actually mean enough to make it all the way to the Library of Congress.

The other thing I thought after reading this article was that the idea was not only weird but somewhat frivolous since it seems there would be more interesting things for the Library of Congress to archive. But then it dawned on me that it really would allow people of just about every walk of life, that has a Twitter account, will be put into history for future generations to see. This means that my tweet earlier this week about Stephen Colbert could be read by my children or my children’s children. Although that sounds a little creepy, it also sounds kind of cool at the same time.

With that idea, I leave you with a quote from Doc Holliday in Tombstone “There is no normal life, Wyatt. There is just life and you live it.” And now thanks to Twitter, that life will be documented for the next several generations to read.

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1 Comment »

  1. Heather Said:

    HEY!

    I’m your huckleberry. 🙂


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