Please, Do Not Be Alarmed.

Dearest Reader,

I am not in Texas.

I am not driking avocado margaritas, taking ecstacy, or having run ins with the law. I do not have a MacBook Air, I do not use my iPhone in flight, and I have never, ever, called myself a Web Communities Strategy Developer. Or a Social Web Applications Design Strategist. (Although I have met people who do, and, no, I don’t know what it means either.)

No, I’m just Shadow Twittering Austin’s annual South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive festival. Nothing more. It is all shenanigans.

I realized I probably needed to spell this out after I received an panicked phone call from my mother, who subscribes to my site feed, and had seen something that alarmed her. I had forgotten that, since making the switch to Tumblr, my Twitter feed is republished here. Mea Culpa, Mom. For you, and everyone else, here’s the deal:

Twitter came into its own last year during SXSW. It marked a tipping point, where it really took off. And when it did, it temporarily turned useless for me, at least for the duration of the festival. As everyone twittered about their flights, food, panel discussions, random celebrity sightings, tacos and subsequent bowel movements, I found I had no reason to read.

This year, rather than ignoring the whole thing, with seemingly every Web-something-or-another professional once again converged on Austin, I decided to play along.

So there I am. In Austin. Drunk. Foolish. Recklessly and unknowingly wealthy. Using pointless hashtags in my 140 character messages, and generally espousing the kind of optimistic hyperbolic nonsense that would indicate I have no memory of the years 1999 and 2000 when everyone with any sense realized it’s just a business, and not some sort of Utopian Flan we shall all consume together in glory!

But it is just a business. And if you ever fucking forget that at the end of the day your only purpose is to deliver to your customers what they need, you shall soon be back to tapping your trust fund. If you are not already.

In the meantime, however, you can join me in Austin, where I shall drop names and acid with equal abandon. It shall not be true, but perhaps it will be fun.

Yours,

Mat

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