Nieuws - 20 januari 2010

What Vink twitters

Everyone twitters who is a little known in The Netherlands. E-mails, posts, scribbles and blogs make way for the tweet. It's the fastest communication medium nowadays, and so it stimulates keeping track of news and trends. Not only is it fast, twittering is also free. And that, of course, adds to the beauty of it all.

Sometimes, the tweets of these well-known Dutch personalities are really terribly trivial. For goodness sake, who would want to know where someone gets his meat or whether you have discovered the special owl or not? 'I twitter, therefore I am' is the slogan. Still, I would like to see more substance in a message with a maximum of 140 characters.
That certainly applies to the texts of well-known Wageningen personalities, such as Simon Vink. Nice to read about. In addition, I get to know other things about our communication advisor via his tweets. For example, he is a fervent bird watcher. How can that not be, with a name like that? Anyway, should I bump into him, I would have a suitable conversation topic.
Twitter has become a strong media weapon. For our communication department, it's a must in its bag of tricks. Nowadays, graduations in Wageningen UR are no longer being presented in big chunks of text or artfully constructed press releases. Placing an intriguing tweet online will make more heads turn. Ground-breaking research worded in a few striking phrases can create publicity for the university. Above all, you have everything under your control, and don't need to engage this or that expensive external agency.
Of course, communication can be made or broken in the case of networks. Aalt Dijkhuizen is right about this: 'We have to build strong relations.' That's a network. In twitter talk, it's called the number of 'followers'. And that number in the case of SimonVink is still at the low end. That network therefore needs to be expanded. Now that we are freed of 'the week of Peter' on intranet, new possibilities spring to mind: the Wageningen UR news via From then on, a large following will be reading: What Vink twitters.