When New York Times executive editor Bill Keller tweeted "#TwitterMakesYouStupid. Discuss" last week, we speculated it was an attempt to gather material for a New York Times Magazine piece. Looks like we were right.
In the article, which will run this Sunday, Keller says the tweet was a "masochistic experiment," i.e. a fancy form of crowdsourcing. His conclusions are about what you'd expect from a Bill Keller column called "The Twitter Trap." Twitter is "the enemy of contemplation." Twitter "makes smart people sound dumb." Bill Keller doesn't think he's a "Luddite." That said, he thinks "we are outsourcing our brains to the cloud."
To be fair, he also calls Twitter a "brilliant device" and praises it for bringing "serendipity to the flow of information." So maybe there's hope yet.
Yet the reaction to the column has been about as positive as the reaction to the tweet. Writes Business Insider's Henry Blodget: "It's no surprise--and, in fact, it's annoyingly predictable--that the editor of the New York Times sees mainly the negatives in the Twitter revolution." Keller last ruffled feathers, as you may recall, in a piece attacking news aggregators, which got him into a nasty spat with Arianna Huffington.