If you need to get up to speed on the phenomenon that is twitter, there are of course a few posts on fasterfuture which have a stab at explaining its power and value.
But for one hit, and one you could share to bring others up to speed relatively succinctly; try Luke Weaver's (@weaverluke's) downloadable paper.
It must be good; he's quoted me! (ah hem...)
"Twitter's value is in keeping the conversation open, visible, synchronous and consistent.”Excerpt:
It is kind of weird, even in terms of a Facebooked contemporary culture, to hang out in a virtual space exchanging 140-character messages.
The whole notion of privacy, a concept that is, after all only as old as the City, seems to be shifting and morphing with great rapidity (at least in the developed, hyper-networked world).
Who knows if Twitter will prove to be a decisive driver and/or beneficiary of social change, or a flash in the pan that attracts a few million wild-eyed wannabe visionaries before collapsing under its own selfreferential weight?
My own twitter-in-a-nutshell? Distributed microblogging for adhoc fuzzy-edged communities of purpose. Yeah, I know. Too brief. Read Luke's paper then.
Bonus link: via gregory lent: The Wisdom Project. Give it some of your time.