Arrington, Comcast and a Chicken walk into the tweetosphere…


With the twitter facebook app finally getting fixed last week I resurrected my long dead twitter account just in time to see a bit of a ruckus today in the tweetosphere (is there really such a thing?).

Long story short, Michael Arrington (of TechCrunch fame) was having a long Comcast internet outage this weekend and was none to happy about it. The usual customer service problems ensue… long holds, non-answers, wrong answers. After crashing with a chicken for internet access he tweeted out his anger and within 20 minutes apparently has a call from Comcast.

Some thoughts and a link collection after the jump.

My first reaction is wow, Comcast is actually watching Twitter to see what customers are upset about. That is pretty amazing. However, my second and more cynical reaction is that they probably only pick up the phone and call people that are at least internet famous like Arrington that complain through applications like twitter.

Still, there is no doubt that the whole thing has been amplified by twitter in a huge (and fast) way and it is conceivable that if something was interesting enough to people — regardless of who started it — it could be similarly amped up. Pretty powerful stuff.

Then I guess to answer my first question, if we are going to talk about the blogosphere we should probably start talking about the tweetosphere as well. In fact I’d almost go as far as saying that twitter is today what blogs were about 8 years ago — an internet backwater populated by a relatively small but very tech-savvy userbase. AKA the perfect place to watch generative development.

TweetScan is just one of many interesting developments in the tweetosphere. For example, by searching for Comcast, or any other major brand, a company could easily watch what people are saying about their product in near real time. Want to know if people are a buzz about the new season of BSG? Watch to see what they are tweeting about.

Twitter has a lot of potential to allow consumers to talkback to companies about their products and it will be interesting if other companies are doing (or start doing) what Comcast apparently does — monitoring twitter and blogs generally and then actually using that to try and fix customer problems.

Blog Post about TC at BuzzMachine

TC Story, TC Tweets

UPDATE (3:57): So it seems that my (as well as many others) skepticism may have been misplaced. It seems that this guy actually has an affiliation with Comcast and is working to help a fair number of random people with Comcast issues. Cool.


  1. skass

    April 7, 2008 @ 10:33 am


    Completely agree with your point about twitter becoming the equivalent of old school blogging. I think the same can be said of Facebook status updates, especially now that one can combine them with the Twitter application.

  2. cbaird

    April 8, 2008 @ 8:03 am


    Will an increase in people using twitter decrease the value of capabilities such as TweetScan? I can imagine a situation in which I was a major company and I scanned for information about myself and (because of an increase in users) all i received back was noise. Opposed to if I conducted my search before the increase in users (searching a “a relatively small but very tech-savvy userbase”) I might get more useful, or at least manageable, results.

    I suppose that the searching capabilities of offerings such as TweetScan may evolve with the growing population of Twitter users and allow for more detailed searches and thus eliminate some of the noise.