This morning, I woke up to a fun meme on Twitter. The #changelovetoknobsongs hashtag. For those that are unfamiliar with how these things take off, it generally means everyone gets on board, tries to have some fun with it, and after a little while, we all move on and everything goes back to normal. 95% of the posts are crap, but there is a portion that will have you laughing so hard, it is worth it.
When Julia Gillard ousted Kevin Rudd as Prime Minister, #spill was born. #ausvotes2010 has emerged as the hashtag for the Australian Federal Election. It helps people to connect, live, during an event on Twitter. The commentary is a mixed bag. Most of it is crap. But, there are a few gems in amongst it that really highlight the value of Twitter. Not only as commentary, but as a source of comedy. @kevinruddexpm seized that moment during the spill, providing us with lowbrow, but instantaneous humour during the leadership change.
And you know what? I love every minute of it.
Why am I comparing #changelovetoknobsongs to #spill? Well, why not? Both of those were sourced from the very same group of people. Both had roughly the same ratio of comedy to crap. And you know what? Yeah, it’s dick jokes. But that’s not even the point.
There were a few people who got on their high horses about the lameness of the meme… but the commentary revolved around it being an “embarrassment” for Twitter. That it is not something you would want to showcase as an example of the power of Twitter. That the jokes were lazy or that “professionals” (still confused about what that even means) would not appreciate the joke.
But the point of Twitter is that it is not the quality of the content, or volume, or even the sophistication of the jokes that matter. It’s that everyone can find an audience, and for a brief moment we can all suspend our grown-upness and be idiots and run with it in the hope of making others laugh. It comes from the ground up. Or, the gutter up, in many cases. But that is precisely why Twitter is so powerful.
Twitter is powerful because people don’t need to censor themselves. Smart people, “professional” people, academics, Doctors, Lawyers, Accountants, IT people, political people, retail assistants, 10, 12, 31, 45, 62… can all play on a level playing field and just be dumb and puerile for a little while. Because we are all 3-dimensional. I am a mother of 3 kids, own a business. I’m educated. I also (surprisingly) know big words, have table manners and wear clothes from both David Jones and Kmart. I am going to be a Doctor and you know what? I find farts funny. And the day I stop finding farts funny is the day I become everything I hate.
I feel qualified to speak on this because I attract business because of who I am and how I say it on Twitter. I speak in an authentic voice and I make no apologies for doing so. I am friends with the most amazing group of diverse people, many of them “professionals”, and they love me for me. That’s how it should be. Airs and graces and pretence is an outmoded and dying concept. I am thankful to Twitter for allowing me to have my real voice out there.
Formality and hierarchy are slowly being eroded, and of course those who either don’t get that, or those who hold power because of it, will resist it. But ultimately, lowbrow or not, these are the things that are changing society for the better. Where a woman can swear and people *respect* what she’s doing. Where a Doctor or a Lawyer can be a *person* rather than a robot. Where a knob joke or a vagina joke has equal airtime to political commentary. It is eclectic, it is not always high quality, but there are gems if you are open to it. And that is why I will always defend it.
I don’t think I have laughed so much as after joining Twitter. It truly is crowdsourced comedy. And yes, like all crowdsourcing you’ll get amateur crap you have to sort through, but every so often, there is this glimmer of genius, or turn of phrase that makes you realise that it’s truly revolutionary. Not many get it or see it the way I do, I understand that, but you know, seriously, lighten the fuck up.
Poo. Bum and Wee. Burp. Fart.