Twitter is not good for support

Sometimes I get questions on Twitter about Fargo or some earlier software I did.

I don’t think it’s good to use Twitter for support. Here’s why.

1. Twitter doesn’t create a record. So if someone else has the problem in the future, they won’t benefit from the information posted in response to your question.

2. You’re only asking one person. I may not know the answer, but some other user might.

3. Only one person is reading your question. That means we can’t easily find out if other people are experiencing the problem, and may be able to provide more information.

4. 140 characters is usually not enough space to describe a problem. And the answer almost never fits in 140 characters.

That’s why when people ask for help on Twitter, I always ask them to post the question on the mail list.


About Dave Winer

Dave Winer, 54, pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in Berkeley, California.
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