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The tweeting in the middle of the night (UK time), from the safe non-insomnia of the Australian afternoon, was quite a successful experiment, I think. Lots of people got involved, some of them finding relief from lying open-eyed in bed, some thoughtfully taking time off from trivial stuff like ambulance control rooms or in one case appendix surgery. A few people stayed up specially to be part of the dealing-with-your-sleeplessness community, which is a bit like when you used to try and get ill at school because you liked the nurse. What with this, we managed to ‘trend’ for about an hour, which Twitter users will know is the ultimate stamp of approval, means that you are one of the big ‘memes’ of the online fraternity, and also carries a cash prize of £5000. Not really. But it was nice. So, Wide Awake With Watson (colloquially, #WAWW) is something I might well return to. At first glance it appeared that a lot of followers had unfollowed me, but it’s since been shown that most of them were ‘bots’, in other words they never quite existed in the first place. So that’s fine.

Sorry if Twitter is of no interest to you, but it’s hard to see what other interface would make something like this possible. You could live blog, but you’d have no way of responding to people, so it would be more of a monologue. Or I suppose you could send several thousand text messages but that has its drawbacks too.

I guess people who are anti-Twitter don’t really dispute that it’s a clever way of contacting other humans, they just deny that it is worth doing at all. Which is an argument that’s difficult to win. But for the rest of us, I hope that #WAWW will now become such a phenomenon that everyone in the country stays up for it, the sleep patterns of a whole nation are ruined, and productivity slumps. Then in the long run we’ll remake ourselves as a nocturnal society and we’ll be far MORE productive because we’ll have been rejuvenated. That’s the way out of this recession. It starts here.

7 Responses

  1. Suzanne aka Senior Watsonian says:

    Well, Mark … I think your monoblog for night owls might have just saved the world’s economy … well done!!!

    I have followed a few on Twitter and looked at many tweets and I might have even tweeted once or twice myself but recently have experienced a terrific burst of activity on FB via ‘chat’ which has been a great way to interact with family members …

    Still enjoying all your blogs and keeping an eye on City for you … obviously you’d never dream of getting their results from anywhere else!!! Will be away at the w/e but will continue to report back … I’ll be watching my 13 year old twin grandsons play on Sunday morning … one of them is now in the Wycombe Wanderers U-13s … will put on my scouting hat to see about him joining an Academy either in the East or West perhaps!!!

    Hope the tour continues to be a huge success and that you’re enjoying it … and Australia …

    Here endeth my own monoblog!!!

  2. brian says:

    great show last night ,who is looking after the zoo while you are here?

  3. Laurs says:

    Mr Watson, you are making my desire to remain Twitter free a lot harder than it should be. This week in particular I could have done with some nocturnal twittering (see, I know very little about the damn thing!) to help fill the hours of my insomnia!

  4. Misha says:

    Well I managed to not have insomnia for the first time in a while and missed it, but I do like when people are up to talk to in the early hours.

  5. Ingrid says:

    Ah i do love a good bit of twitter (: Couldn’t join in this time because of early morning swimming, but i’d love to do this again. Please! :D

  6. Alex says:

    This seemed like it would have been fun. I also woke up so tired yesterday that I really may as well have joined in. Never mind.

  7. Rachael says:

    If you were in charge we could stamp out all the worlds problems in about a week I reckon.

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