To Tweet or Not to Tweet (During a Performance)
by Meghan_Stauts
 Social Media: Why It Matters
December 09, 2011 02:36 PM | 474 views | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Tweet seats: in-house seats that allow theater patrons to tweet throughout the performance without disturbing their fellow lovers of the arts.

I promise you, this is not just some random social media catchphrase that I made up. Tweet seats, as I found out this week after stumbling upon this USA Today article, are popping up in theaters and performing arts centers across the country. Often located in the back row of theaters, they are meant to accommodate those people who wish to live-tweet symphonies, musicals, and the like while appeasing those who cannot stand the tell-tale combination of cell phone lights and the flurry of thumbs of people tweeting, texting, etc.

When USA Today's Kara Rose asked patrons about these tweet seats, one concert attendee sang their praises, saying, "I could communicate openly about my reactions to the music, musicians and conductor — without speaking a word. Plus, I had the opportunity to engage others, and get their reactions to the performance." On the flip side, another grumbled that the people in the tweet seats, "...didn't even look up to applaud at the end of each selection. The fact that they were watching their handheld devices, they missed out on what was happening on the stage."

This is where I break free from the social media pack and side with the old schoolers. Don't get me wrong. I'm all for communicating openly and obsessively documenting every aspect of my day (hello, Instagram), but even I reach a point where it's time to put down the iPhone and take a deep, touch-screen-free, in-the-now breath.

Awards shows, political debates, high school football games? All free game for live tweeting. However, if I'm taking the time out of my life to go enjoy a real, live performance that isn't taking place in my living room, I want my attention to be focused solely on what's in front of me - not retina-deep in my phone, concentrating on how I can describe my experience in 140 characters or less for the sake of "engaging others." At the end of the day, I prefer to engage others face-to-face over a nice meal where the risk of my phone's text autocorrect embarrassing me is nonexistent.

What do you think, blogging brethren? Tweetriffic or twittorrible idea?

(I'm working on the social media puns, I promise.)

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