Twitter: Marmite for CIOs?

CIO Jury: "The human brain is incapable of understanding the career implications of electronic communications prior to the send button being pressed"...

...CIOs need to consider why they want to tweet in the first place: "I think you have to fully understand the medium and how you want to use it. Are you speaking on behalf of your company? Do you want to address only your staff? What is it about Twitter that makes this a more appropriate medium than a regular staff meeting or email? Or a blog on a closed intranet?

"Is a regular feed of 'The Thoughts of Me' just an ego boost, or are you really imparting something of value? Personally, I'm frightened of the inanity that I have seen in so many other Twitter feeds, where personal discussions exist alongside public pronouncements and comments so straightforwardly irrelevant and boring that one's closest friend and family would be embarrassed.

"I don't Twitter, currently, for these reasons. A lot of discussion is given to one's personal brand - Twittering or blogging is a great way to boost these brand values, or bury them six feet under.

Mike Wright, head of technology, Man Group, said: "I spend enough time at a keyboard. The job should be more about people, so spend the time talking to people face to face or on the phone."

Mike Roberts, IT director at The London Clinic, was to the point: "It's vacuous."

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This week's CIO Jury was:

  • Nicholas Bellenberg, IT director, Hachette Filipacchi
  • Peter Birley, director of IT and business operations, Browne Jacobson LLP
  • Graham Benson, IT director, MandMDirect
  • Steve Clarke, systems and operations director, The TalkTalk Group
  • Kevin Fitzpatrick, CIO, Sodexo Northern Europe
  • Adam Gerrard, CIO, Avis Europe
  • Madhushan Gokool, IT manager, Storm Model Management
  • Paul Haley, director of information technology, University of Aberdeen
  • Mike Roberts, IT director, The London Clinic
  • Richard Storey, head of IT solutions, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust
  • Steve Williams, director of information systems and services, Newcastle University
  • Mike Wright, head of technology, Man Group

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By Steve Ranger

Steve Ranger is the UK editor-in-chief of ZDNet and TechRepublic. An award-winning journalist, Steve writes about the intersection of technology, business and culture, and regularly appears on TV and radio discussing tech issues. Previously he was th...