The evolution of Twitter continues so rapidly and across such a wide front that assessments of its impact have constantly to be revised. But the extent to which it operates as a forum for shared experience and consciousness-raising has been brought home in the past few days by two remarkable streams of activity.
In the first, the novelist Linda Grant, responding to International Women's Day, instigated a series of tweets in which women recounted jaw-dropping tales of sexist treatment they had experienced. There was also, it has to be said, a funny side to these tweets, which was certainly not the case with the second stream. This one came in response to a Mumsnet rape awareness campaign – and what the tweets revealed was truly shocking. Self-selecting though such groups of tweeters may be, the value of their testimony cannot be denied. It amounts to instant and compelling social history that galvanises even as it informs.Reuse content