Image from Digital Breezes.
ONE OF THE BEST time-wasting values of Twitter comes in the form of Twitterbots who follow me. They bring equal measures of absurdity and serendipity while reminding me the Twitterverse never sleeps.
Twitterbots are also one of the most public manifestations of creative creative programming. A clever Python coder can recycle ideas that can be leverage for-profit or for charity. Year ago, people might have moaned about getting spam in their e-mails but I don't hear the same strident objections from people when they glance at their timelines and see a few Twitterbots chatting at them.
In fact, I think you might conclude Twitterbots are merely evidence of modern automation. They show up when you're talking about coffee, holiday destinations or software. They are as harmful as graffiti sprayed on the side of hoarding alongside a busy highway.
I'm sure Twitter will start to figure out ways of blocking the bots because in their current form, today's Twitterbots are riding inside the mainstream without paying for advertising time. But if Twitter starts to clamp down, they risk making this online conversation pit into a quieter, gentler place. And who wants that when you like bot such as Mark Sample’s My Favorite Things, which substitutes random words into Oscar Hammerstein’s lyrics while still keeping the song’s rhyme scheme?