| Columns |

Forget Facebook: Minorities Prefer Twitter

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Miami and help keep the future of New Times free.

Luther Campbell, the man whose

booty-shaking madness made the U.S. Supreme Court stand up for free

speech, gets as nasty as he wants to be for Miami New Times. This

week, Luke explains why Twitter is the social media network preferred

by minorities.

Everybody is talking about Facebook's

forthcoming initial public offering, but I'd rather invest in

Twitter, the social media network that welcomes everybody. Research

shows African-Americans and Latinos are more likely to join Twitter

than Facebook. Last year, the number of African-Americans on Twitter

nearly doubled, according to the Pew Research Center's Internet &

American Life Project. The study shows blacks and Hispanics combined

are about a third of Twitter users.

Another market research firm, Edison Research, found that blacks make up 22 percent of Twitter's market -- way more than their piece of the U.S. population. Highly educated white people love Facebook, which started out as a social network for Harvard University students. Roughly 78 percent of Anglo web users with some college experience have a Facebook profile, according to Pew's statistics.

I don't like Mark Zuckerberg's social network because promoters can clutter up your wall with bottle service ads. So-called friends can add you, without your permission, to their group or page, and then bombard you with notifications. Being on Facebook is like having virtual Jehovah's Witnesses and Tupperware salesmen knocking on your door every five seconds. Shit's annoying.

Twitter is definitely easier to use. It's direct and instantaneous just like a text message. In fact, Twitter started out as a text messaging service in 2006 and continues to be friendly for all types of cell phones. The Pew and Edison studies concluded that blacks and Hispanics rely more on their mobile phones as their primary connection to the World Wide Web. Minority Twitter users also tend to be a lot younger, so they are more interested in pop culture.

With Twitter, celebrities can have conversations with their fans and detractors. Minorities Chad Ochocinco and LeBron James are just some of the famous people who constantly interact with their thousands of followers. I think we all should forget about this Facebook thing and make Twitter our social network of choice.

I use Twitter on a daily basis to show my supporters how much I appreciate them and to tell my haters to kiss my ass. For instance, sports agent Howard Shatsky tweeted he had an issue with my recent column about his boy Drew Rosenhaus. I tweeted back, "Eat a D." Now that's effective use of 140 characters.

However, I do have a problem with Twitter's verification process, which let's people know it is really you tweeting and not a fake Twitter account. Once you've been verified, your followers grow exponentially. But it seems only famous people who are tied to a cable television network or a major record label or a big production studio get verified. Every housewife from E!'s popular reality series franchise has a verified Twitter account, yet I've been waiting more than a year to get my seal of authenticity.

I think Twitter cuts deals with companies like Viacom to get a percentage off celebrity Twitter accounts. You know if Kardashian sells a tweet for $10,000, Twitter is getting some of that money. How else is social media going to make money?

Follow Luke on Twitter at @unclelukereal1.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.