Twitter strives to explain itself to the public
A new "About Twitter" page attempts to describe the social network and explain how and why people tweet.
Twitter is aiming to remove some of its mystery as the company preps to go public.
The microblogging site has revamped its About page to shed more light on its features and benefits. The Products section of the page specifically touts how you can discover what's happening, how Twitter is accessible from everywhere, and how you can now see photos and videos in your timeline.
The page gets down to details in the "Discover what you can do with Twitter" area, a how-to guide for people unfamiliar with the service. This section explains what tweets are and how you can follow them or post your own to connect with other people.
A "Learn the Basics" page then tries to cover the terminology used by tweeters, such as username, retweet, and hashtag. It also explains why you have only 140 characters in which to express yourself, how to find people to follow, and how to send a private message.
Twitter can be confusing to people who've never tried tweeting and even to those who've dabbled with the site.
I teach a social networking class in which I cover Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Most people who come to the class are at least somewhat familiar with Facebook and LinkedIn. But many don't understand the features behind Twitter or why they would use them. That lack of understanding is something Twitter needs to address if it wants to attract enough investors to take off as a public company.
Twitter boosted the price of its initial public offering toon Monday. The range makes Twitter worth as much as $13.9 billion. The IPO is expected to be priced Wednesday night, with initial trading to start on Thursday.