After being on Twitter for some time, I noticed two trends. Firstly, the proliferation of people pretending to be someone else - usually famous. In addition, the number of Twitter addresses that are actually "robots" or spammers have become more of nusisance than ever before.
The second trend was the emergence of 'Tweet-Ups'. These live events - usually a coffee morning, after work drinks or dinner - are gatherings of people on Twitter who live in close proximity to each other who want to meet for real. Upon attending these functions, I found that meeting these people in the flesh brought alive their Twitter presence. I then thought about what perceptions people would have about these Twitterers if all they saw was their Twitter address and didn't get the opportunity to meet them in real life. Enter RealTweeple.
The idea came to me that through the power of portable video (FlipCam) and YouTube, I'd be able to share these peoples profiles with my followers on my blogs and online networks. So I took a few videos of these folks via FlipCam and created the ConnectGen YouTube channel. I invited other people to post their 'RealTweeple' videos on the channel with three simple guidelines:
1. Interviewee to be interviewed by interviewer - no self postings and preferably in one take.
2. Profile should include name, twitter handle and one thing about interviewee. Blatant self-promotion is discouraged.
3. Video piece must not exceed 40 seconds and could include more than one interviewee.
Every posting is 'ReTweeted' to my current 10,000+ followers using #RealTweeple and a request for others to RT. The RealTweeple project can be found on the YouTube ConnectGen channel.