I am (hopefully) not stating the obvious and (certainly) not misapplying Deleuze’s concept.
The average Twitter user posts a random assortment of interesting things she comes across in her daily life, follows the posts of a bunch of other people she may or may not know, and, in turn, is followed by an equally diverse crowd.
Throw in to the mix a growing number of organizations microblogging their daily comings and goings for publicity in some shape and form, plus the annoying small horde of spambots whose reason of being to this day eludes me.
What’s in this?
First, a democratized function of curation. I use the former word outside its glorious context. Simply said, we are curating the shit out of our daily and not-so-daily lives and rehashing others’ content along the way if we consider it noteworthy.
Then, we can also speak of a doubling of curation: We curate curators by choosing to follow this and that twitterer.
Last point: the couplings are seemingly anonymous (neither party has to know each other) and not mutual: If I follow you, you need not follow me. This does away with the asinine notion of friendship, á la Facebook.
The latter has, in fact, introduced a parallel function of non-reciprocal following (fandom) but it’s at most an inelegant fix that throws in yet another thing in their already-annoying melée of sharing stuff.
In contrast, Twitter is dead simple, fixated on a primitive logic of microblogging and following.
That is the textbook definition of a rhizome.
(I can’t believe I typed this on my iPhone.)