Just for a moment, let’s put Twitter’s constant downtime problem aside, and concentrate on a different conundrum — one shared by all sorts of social apps/platforms: The more popular it gets, the less useful it becomes.
That is, the more friends you “follow”, the less likely you are to pay attention to them, because you’ll have a torrent of 140-character missives floating across your desktop. Right now, socially conscious Twitter users are trying to handle the problem on their own, by limiting their output to a few tweets a day (something we try to do with our @alleyinsider account). But some Twitter-abusers can’t help themselves.
Another version of the same problem: We don’t value all of our Twitter pals equally. Some we only want to check in on occasionally. And in some cases we hang on every word.
But we get the sense that Twitter feels our pain. In an interview with InformationWeek’s Mitch Wagner, CEO Jack Dorsey says “Twitter is working on adding the ability for users to separate their contacts into groups.” Nothing else to go on for the moment (we’ll update if we get more) but we assume that Twitter will be giving us the ability, a la Facebook, to divvy up our friends. So we can hear from some more than others. Alternate theory: Perhaps we’ll have the ability to check in on different cliques instead of all our pals at the same time. We don’t care, as long as it works. Hurry up, please!