Twitter, strangers and monocultures

I have been following with interest the suggestion by some Twitter users that they should start following strangers to diversify their Twitter feeds. First Joel Johnson at Gizmodo and Jonah Lerner in the Frontal Cortex commented that following random strangers was a very rewarding activity. I was truly interested by this approach, I do not know if it says a lot about modern American life that you have to go on Twitter to have access to different cultures, but perhaps we are not all that different. Most people will generally have followers that share similar interests.

The concept is a bit alien to me, I follow people from around the world, so my Twitter stream is not only always active, but it shows a lot of different interests. There is of course a large geek/technologist/lawyer presence (as I found out during ORGCon), but there is still a lot of diversity.

This got me thinking about wasted potential of many of the technologies we take for granted. The Internet allows us to connect to anyone with an account, yet we normally keep similar social circles. Perhaps there is indeed something to be said about just following random people on Twitter.

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