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THIS SUMMER, JOIN THE TWITTERVERSE

Attention, all who are about to cross the threshold into long, lazy summerness. We have a word for you:

Twitter.

We know many of you have avoided this 140-character social media venue, or have tried it, only to let the little birdie go quiet on your screen.

But bear with us. Today in our last issue of the school year, we hope to talk you into the Twitterverse so you will stay connected with tb-two* all summer long, even though we're won't publish our weekly newsprint version again until September.

Something we often hear from people who have never used Twitter: I have nothing interesting to say.

Well, that's fine, because guess what? You don't have to write "just brushed my teeth" or anything else to be an active part of Twitter. Twitter is a way for YOU to stay informed. You use it to follow news, people, places and things to do. You use it for recipes, special deals, coupons and other useful information. There really is no limit to who and what you choose to follow.

These days, many news stories break on Twitter before they do anywhere else. You can follow news anchors, reporters and photographers who tweet about stories they are working on even before they air on television or print in the paper or on websites.

If that bores you, follow your favorite TV show or restaurant. Or Kim Kardashian. Here's the really neat thing: It's 100 percent up to you. Twitter is designed to be a personalized source of streaming information for the user, your own selective source of news and information.

Why not give it a try? Check out this easy guide to Twitter compiled by our college intern Sarah Small, who just graduated from the University of Central Florida. Dive in this summer when you have little else to do, and just play. And follow tb-two* of course.

* * *

Important things to know about Twitter

* First step: Go to twitter.com.

* You sign up with a username (@yourname), and write a short bio about yourself, as well as post a photo. That's your profile. You find other people by searching for their usernames. (Hint: tb-two*s is @tbtwo.)

* Twitter is a way to stay up to date on what is going on in the world as well as a way to network with anyone (friends, businesses, newspapers, schools, colleagues, celebrities, etc.).

* On Twitter you can choose whose tweets you want to see. However, you generally can't control who sees your tweets. Anyone can follow anyone else.

* You get 140 characters to write each update (you can use other sites to shrink links and add photos and video).

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