One law school professor on the law, legal education and everything (with apologies to the late Douglas Adams)
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How Twitter Saved My Life (kinda)

Twitter saved my life. Well, not literally but metaphorically it did.  Twitter bucked up my morale, kept me in touch with interesting people, and gave me incentive to recover from surgery.

I started tweeting last March during my recovery from Prostate Cancer surgery. I bought an Ipod touch to let me listen to music during the long hours when I was supposed to be resting.  Because it was so uncomfortable to get off the couch very often, I became close friends with the Touch. I got bored listening to music so I started to discover the other things the Touch could do. I said: “Hey, I’ve heard about this Twitter thing. I’ll check it out while I have some time on my hands.”

Once signed on, I soon discovered my friend Skip Rutherford, the Clinton School Dean, tweeting away. (@JLRIII) And the Clinton School students. And Bowen Law School students. And lawyers. And PR people. And…

Twitter allowed  me to break out of the isolation my recuperation imposed. I don’t like to be cooped up and rarely sit still at work but moving was challenging and uncomfortable. Twitter gave me incentive to work on my recovery.  I tweeted the number of steps I had taken that day or my recovering appetite or my new Guitar Hero scores.  And the encouragement from my new twitter buddies kept me accountable to them and gave me even more incentive to take a few more steps the next day.  It kept me happy and helped me to become healthy.

Following Skip showed me the power twitter had as a professional tool. I loved how he interacted with his students, promoted the school’s events,  and touted Little Rock. Since then, I have become an avid tweeter with over 2700 tweets and almost 700 followers. I am one of four known tweeting law school deans (cool fact: 2 of us are from Arkansas, @Nancecy from UAF). It has helped me stay in contact with students, follow the pulse of the law school and, at times, solve problems before they festered. Now, I am seeking ways to incorporate it into the classes I teach.

This is what I mean when I say that Twitter saved my life. It gave me a new and richer life and got me through a difficult time. If that’s not worth tweeting about, I don’t know what is.

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