Twitter and Hitler

Twitter and Hitler– an unlikely duo, but recently both were featured in an online, viral spoof showcasing

user’s dedication to the service, and, frustrations with the continual outages. (BTW, you should definitely watch the spoof– it’s pretty funny).

As a regular user of Twitter (though hardly a power user like many) I too, understand the frustration of not being able to Tweet the mundane on demand.

But it makes me wonder: do we often take for granted the free services the online world provides? Recently, gmail was hit hard by a group of users, frustrated by their outage for over two hours. Granted many people hang their livelihood on free services like gmail, Yahoo! Messenger, ebay, and yes, even Twitter, but does it make sense? I always believed that the adage of “you get what you pay for” rings true– so if you’re paying nothing and still getting something, why become anything but irked when you run into an outage? Irate gets you nowhere.

From Rammikin's Flickr page

From Rammikin

If you’re going to expect to make money off of something that costs you nothing, what is the acceptable level of service that you should receive? However, if we were talking paid services, then, by all means, tweet your heart out. (Irony is: many of the gmail outage tweets also reference twitter’s outage. At what point does the brand equity dissipate and users start to associate the “Great Gmail outage” not with Google’s reliable service, but Twitter’s unreliable product?)


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