Typepad, Tumblr, Twitter ecosystem 1/2: our partners

I have three Ts for my writing platform: Typepad, Twitter, and Tumblr. Typepad, one of the oldest blogging services, is where the main posts reside; carefully crafted pieces of informative writings with deep insights and top- notch humor. I'm allowed to dream on.

Tumblr, going one step from Typepad toward social media, is great for sharing contents that are abundant but still too short for full-fledged posts: quotes from books, photos with comments, and collection of 80s music video clips.

Twitter, going one more step from Tumblr toward social media, is where I broadcast my updates, poke/stalk strangers, hijack contents (retweet), and share ideas that are too short/silly to form articles. Tweets fade away quickly, so I can be even more shameless here.

Surprisingly, I am not confused about how to use these three platforms, despite their blurry distinctions, overlapping features (and names). Nobody taught me; for each platform, after a few days of usage, I was able to transform myself from an awkward test driver to a semi-pro racer. Again, I am allowed to dream on.

I could do so probably because I subconsciously applied real-world analogies to the aforementioned three platforms: in particular, our partners and news programs. It is time to pull them out in the sunshine and see if we can extract some useful lessons.

Blogging platforms as our partners: Typepad is my spouse, and Twitter and Tumblr are my lovers (again and again, I am allowed to…). It might not be a coincidence that these three platforms have similar names; we keep choosing the same type of people as our partners no matter how many times they (we) disappoint us (them), right?

Typepad: spouse

  • Won't go anywhere, been there for a long time (SixApart, the company that hosts Typepad, is the pioneer of blogging – they won't go down, despite having rough times. I hope.)
  • Most accepting of all three (Typepad allows writing long and short posts, texts and multimedia. Various widgets are available too, including Twitter and Tumblr plug-ins. How generous is it? I know, everybody enjoys content-swapping these days)
  • High maintenance (Typepad requires monthly fee. It also takes god-awful long hours to write a blog entry, though it's not Typepad's fault)

Tumblr: lover #1: the fantasy housewife

  • Feels both familiar and fresh (Tumblr allows me to create blog-like posts in a Twitter-like interface)
  • Low maintenance, no strings attached (No monthly fee is required. And writing each entry is easier than in Typepad because it is short. Tumblr is an ideal place when I have fewer ideas, less time/energy but would like to write something)
  • Not quite enough to satisfy hunger for words (Like eating fast-food does not quite substitute for a good old home-cooked dinner. Didn’t Paul Newman say “Why go out for hamburger when you have steak at home?” (Uh, it was about NOT cheating on his spouse.) Tumblr is fun, but eventually I sit down in front of that bulky Typepad interface to write something meaty.

Twitter: lover #2: the social gal

  • Parties all the time (Twitter allows me to have interesting interactions with total strangers)
  • Ideal for one-night stand (Many Twitter interactions are spontaneous, supported by the whim of passion)
  • Easy come, easy go (There is no requirements for fee and permission to follow or unfollow someone)

Continued to the second part, the news programs analogy…