Thursday, Apr. 30, 2009

The Twitter Guys

Years from now, when historians reflect on the time we are currently living in, the names Biz Stone and Evan Williams will be referenced side by side with the likes of Samuel Morse, Alexander Graham Bell, Guglielmo Marconi, Philo Farnsworth, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs — because the creation of Twitter by Stone, 35 (right), Williams, 37, and Jack Dorsey, 32 (not pictured), is as significant and paradigm-shifting as the invention of Morse code, the telephone, radio, television or the personal computer.

In a sea of Web 2.0 technologies, Twitter — the microblogging service that restricts each entry, or tweet, to 140 characters — has managed to transcend basic instant messaging and social networking. It is a new and completely original form of communication that has gained worldwide adoption and captured the imaginations of people at every level of media interest or influence.

For someone like me who lives in a construct of filtered communication — packaged and polished by the industry that employs me — Twitter has become a new instrument for expressing myself and accessing cultural trends, opinions and information. Twitter is my front door to the Internet and my medium for sharing the content I create while advocating for the causes close to my heart and investing in the connections I want to have with people from all walks of life.

I believe that Twitter is a stage for humanity and connection, not the triumph of technology. Right now the word revolution is spelled with 140 characters.

Kutcher ( is a co-founder of Katalyst Media. His new film, Spread, is scheduled for release on Aug. 14

Fast Fact: Ashton's million-plus Twitter followers know: had he written a tweet, it would have ended "referenced sid"—140 characters, the same as this