Tuesday, January 14, 2014

In Which I Explain How Twitter Chats Work, Because You've Gotta Join Mine! #CardiComedy #Dogs

But first, a real-live conversation from last week, in my kitchen:

Eldest Child: So, which day this week can you take me to a hiring session for my summer job?

Me: [Thinks aloud.] Well, Tuesday's out, and Wednesday? Wednesday I've got a Twitter chat at 8 p.m., so no.

Husband and Eldest Child: [Cut off mother, mid-thought, snickering.] A Twitter chat?? Are you serious?? What the heck is a Twitter chat??

Me: [Decides not to expend energy answering patronizing questions.] I'll drive you on Thursday. Remind me, okay?

Okay, so first of all, my family members are dorks. ;) Second, Twitter chats are fun! Third, I'm gonna start hosting one - called #CardiComedy - on Sundays from 7:30-8:30 p.m. EST, and I hope you'll attend!

What is #CardiComedy?

Essentially, it'll be an hour of me, making dumb jokes about my own pet experiences, and throwing crazy, dog-related questions out for attendees to answer, in real time. I envision a canine-centric, interactive comedy hour, where we all get to know each other better over a few well-deserved laughs!

Why should I attend #CardiComedy? I have other stuff I could be doing at that time.
  • Because it's free fun!
  • Jon Farleigh and Dewi will be there. Have I mentioned we'll be sharing silly pet photos, too?
  • You'll get to know other dog people and expand your horizons on Twitter (and maybe beyond).
  • There will be prizes. Yes, I said PRIZES! Stuff for your dog, maybe a gift card for you - I have plans to give away some of both, on occasion, and you must be present to be eligible. More on this later...
  • (Celebrity) special guests. Laurie Eno of The Daily Corgi, anyone? (I always tell her she's the "Oprah Winfrey of Corgi Nation [which technically spans the globe]." So, yeah, I'd say she has some celebrity!) I'm thrilled to announce Laurie will be a VIP guest at the first chat. Yay!
  • You don't have to get dressed up. In fact, you could wear a paper bag and we wouldn't care!
  • You'll have stuff to talk about at work on Monday. (Or not. But you could, in theory.☺)

How the heck do I attend #CardiComedy on Twitter? What if I don't even have a Twitter account?

To attend (Twitter user):
  1. Log into Twitter.
  2. Locate the #CardiComedy chat.
    • Enter #CardiComedy in the Search field (magnifying glass icon at top of page).
    • On the Results for #CardiComedy page, click All to see everyone's tweets.

      : Anyone who tweets about the chat (before, during or after) must include #CardiComedy in the body of their tweet. That's how we all keep up with who's attending and what they're saying. This is the hardest thing to remember in a chat. If you forget the hashtag (and you will), you'll be like, "why isn't anyone replying to my tweet?" And then, you'll remember that you DIDN'T use the hashtag, and be all, "crap! who's looking at my tweet?!" And (if you're like me), you'll waste a pile of time deleting the first one and doing it over. (So, my point is, when you mess up, just know you're not the only one who's ever messed up, okay?)
  3. Get comfortable (remember to bring your camera, if your pets will be nearby) and enjoy the conversation!
Non-Twitter users: Just skip #1. You don't need an account to find and follow Twitter chats, silently. You DO, however, need an account if you want to actively participate, or enter contests.

How the heck do I follow the conversation? It's happening so FAST!

The Hard Way

You know that "refresh" (circular arrow) icon at the top of your browser window? Well, you'd need to click it every 30 seconds or so (depending on how many people are tweeting using the hashtag #CardiComedy) to refresh the feed. It can be done (I've done it, more than once), but there's a much easier way...

Using TweetDeck (Easy!)

Note: TweetDeck is a tool built by, and located within Twitter itself. You must have a Twitter account to use TweetDeck.
  1. Go to tweetdeck.twitter.com.
    Note: You'll see your Twitter "home" page, and also, split into columns, your messages, notifications and activity (refer to the image above).
  2. On the left menu, click the search (magnifying glass) icon.
  3. On the "Choose column type" page, select Search.
  4. Search for #CardiComedy.
  5. Click "Add Column" at the bottom of the box.
    Result: You should see a new "#CardiComedy" column at the far right of your existing columns.
  6. Sit back and watch the tweets update in real time. (Really, you don't have to refresh or do anything!)
How do I interact in the chat from TweetDeck?

To compose a NEW tweet: Click the compose (quill and paper) icon in the upper left corner of your screen.

To interact (reply, retweet, favorite) with an existing tweet: Simply hover over or click the tweet in your #CardiComedy column and VOILA! All the action icons appear at the bottom of the tweet!

What if TweetDeck breaks down?

If this happens, which is rarely, but it can, I suggest using HootSuite.com as an alternative. If you need help getting that program up and running (it's not nearly as intuitive as TweetDeck), I can try to help. Just send me an email.

Okay, I'd love to attend #CardiComedy; when's the first chat?

Sunday, January 26, 7:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. EST (4:30 PST)

Will you come?! I hope so!

So, you think they'll come? Can we get down now? Is the mic off?


  1. I also love Twitter chats but I don't tell anyone so that I don't have to experience any awkward conversations like yours. Brychwyn and I will be at #CardiComedy for sure!

    1. Thanks for the tip, Bethany. :) I'll refrain from spreading the word about your obvious lapse in judgement. hehe

  2. Sounds like fun and we hope it goes well. You must tell us all about it as we will be asleep then because of the time difference. Have a wonderful Wednesday.
    Best wishes Molly

  3. That's a lot of instructions! You must have been a technical writer in another life!

    I've never used Twitter. Once I got sucked into FB, I vowed to never start another social media!

    1. Is it obvious? ;)The good thing about Twitter chats (vs FB) is that once they're over, they're over. Sometimes those FB convos can just go on for days. ugh!

  4. Awesome idea...I actually had no idea what Tweetdeck was and I'm glad you explained here because wow, it is pretty useful!

  5. Fun idea! I've been to twitter chats before and found them fun - although I often have a hard time cuz I'm so wordy! Weekends are hard for me as I usually try to stay offline to hang out with the hubs (cuz he works such crazy long hours during the week) but I'll try to make it. Sometimes he even ends up working on Sunday afternoons, so we'll see!

  6. Sounds like fun! Mr. K has definitely gotten into some funny stuff that would be #CardiComedy worthy! We'll just have to see what he's up to that night...for once, I'm hoping he's NOT on his best behavior! Much love, The Scottie Mom.

  7. Hey, everybody! Thanks for taking the time to leave the thoughtful comments about the chat! :) Just wanted to say that although I hope you can come, I don't expect *anyone* to give up their precious weekend time. If you feel like tuning in, though, just for a completely sophomoric (er juvenile/silly) change of pace, please do! :D

  8. Gwynnie and I will be there with bells on! Little Miss Pudgy Paws is a maybe. Obviously there will be advance set-up to accomplish as I have neither sent, nor received, a tweet. Can you tweet from an I-Pad, or is it a phone only thingy? Hi Dewi and Jo

    1. Oh, I'm so glad you can make it! You can tweet in Twitter from any internet connected device, including the good old fashioned PC! It's easy - just have to keep the tweet to 140 characters or less, and remember to use #CardiComedy in the tweet body. :)


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