Are Tweets a New Form of Poetry?

In a bid to make an inordinate amount of time on Twitter well spent, I wrote this piece for the Cardiff University Digital Cultures Network blog (@ http://cardiffdigitalnetwork.org) about the function of tweets and social media posts in a new digital literary culture.

Digital Cultures Network

In this fascinating post, Jannat Ahmed, an MA student in English Literature at Cardiff University, asks us to think about a new kind of poetry… 

In our digital age, are tweets a new form of poetry? This is a question I have asked myself after seeing how people engage with specific types of posts on Twitter, Tumblr and Facebook. While tweets themselves have their own restrictions (their 140 characters, interestingly, can remind us of the restrictive 14 lines in a sonnet, for example), it is not the straightforward 140 character restriction of a tweet that I correspond with an idea of poetry, but another kind of post prevalent on social platforms that offers poetic engagement: Having gathered force for several years as MSN Messenger statuses, the phenomena of inspirational quotes and narrative posts has found its way onto all kinds of social media channels. From stories about real people on the…

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