Twitter co-founder: Over-tweeting 'unhealthy'

Excessive time on Twitter is not good for you, says one of the men who came up with the idea. File photo / Thinkstock
Excessive time on Twitter is not good for you, says one of the men who came up with the idea. File photo / Thinkstock

The co-founder of Twitter has urged its 500 million users to get off the micro-blogging website and do something else instead.

Christopher Stone said he did not want anybody to spend hours using the site because it is "unhealthy".

Instead he said they should dip in and find what they want - then stop and do other things.

Mr Stone was one of the four men who created Twitter in 2006 and has remained creative director, helping it become one of the most influential social networks in the world.

But users have repeatedly complained that it is incredibly addictive, with some staying logged on for 12 hours at a time. At a conference in Montreal, Mr Stone, 37, said using Twitter that much was not what he intended. "To me, that sounds unhealthy," he said.

"I like the kind of engagement where you go to the website and you leave because you've found what you are looking for or you found something very interesting and you learned something.

"I think that's a much healthier engagement. Obviously, we want you to come frequently."

Twitter allows users to post short messages - no longer than 140 characters - for others to see online.

Among the first celebrities to use the site was Stephen Fry, who tweeted a picture of himself when he got stuck in a lift in 2009.

In his speech, Mr Stone admitted that when Twitter first launched many thought it would fail because they did not think it was useful. "Nobody thought it was a good idea," he said.

"And I distinctly remember my colleague Evan Williams saying, 'Well, neither is ice cream. Should we ban ice cream and all joy or can we have something that's just fun? What's wrong with that?'"

The speech has echoes of the infamous comments by tycoon Gerald Ratner in 1991, who effectively destroyed his cut-price jewellery empire when he said one of the firm's products was "total ***p".

- Daily Mail

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