For the last two or three years I’ve opened the day with coffee and Twitter.
Well, email first, and the weather and then the familiar feeds from trusted sources I’ve carefully curated over the years.
News from the Guardian, BBC, the ABC, the Saturday Paper and then links and insights from authors I trust, colleagues, former colleagues, ex-students.
I kept my reading selective, used a twitter client called Tweetbot that got rid of the ads and didn’t see a lot of hate.
But that’s been changing, and the whole experience has felt a lot less stable under new ownership. Increasingly, I felt less and less comfortable with the idea of participating in Twitter and passively endorsing where it seems to be going.
So, like a lot of people, it seems, I’ve moved over to a smaller, more decentralised version that can’t be bought by a megalomaniacal billionaire. Mastodon, specifically the zirk.us server. You can find me there at @firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s taken the long weekend to finally find time to have a first look at the new Australian Poetry website, but I have now and it looks good. I like the layout and it’s very newsy and is trying to incorporate some social tools including groups, friend requests and more. All very nicely integrated. They’ve even got a twitter feed, integration with Facebook and an Iphone app. Its chunky at 60MB and $3.99 but has a lot of information on Australian poets and poetry-related activity happening in Australia. I even got a friend request from Admin to welcome me! Nice. It will be good to see how this develops.
Australian Poetry Ltd is a merger between the Australian Poetry Centre based in Melbourne and Poets’ Union based in NSW. It aims to be the new peak body for poetry in Australia with a charter to promote and support Australian poets and poetry.
It’s certainly in a better state than the old Fellowship of Australian Writers, which looks a bit tired in its website. I was a member of the FAW for a long time, and did my first public reading of a poem of my own at the Manly (NSW) branch one evening. I was so nervous and I read a piece called Two Maggies. Everyone was very polite. So I’ve got good memories of that organisation and the work they do. It was established in the 1920s, but it does seem to be struggling a bit at the moment.