I first became familiar with the concept of “Rotation Curation” when I learnt that the official Twitter account of Sweden was put in the hands of a different citizen every week. Based on this tweet alone I decided that this was basically the greatest thing I’d ever heard of.
My first thought was “how amazing would it be if Ireland had one of these” and I already envisioned myself tweeting on behalf of the country.
I never actually researched whether or not Ireland had one of these accounts because I foolishly assumed this was purely a Swedish thing. It wasn’t actually till a few weeks later that one of @Ireland’s tweets were retweeted onto my timeline and I realised, not only did Ireland catch onto this idea of rotation curation, HEAPS of other places around the world did it too.
Following the link in Ireland’s Twitter bio, I read the details of this project before sending an email to apply to have the account for a week. This was back in the August of last year and I didn’t hear anything for months, and after a while even though I continued to follow the account, I kind of forgot I applied for it in the first place.
Then on the morning of Sunday the 16th of November (sorry, I’m weirdly good at remembering dates) while checking my emails in bed I opened one from the great Darragh Doyle asking me would I be happy to take over the account the following week.
I was ridiculously excited. The thought of 24,000 people reading my weird running commentary on life for a whole week made me giddy.
That night I headed back up to Limerick to start a new week at college, and one where I (as I liked to think of it anyway) was tweeting on behalf of the nation.
I didn’t expect such an overwhelming amount of support from all the account’s followers so soon! Everyone wishing me luck for the week and saying they were looking forward to hearing what I had to say. I made a point of feeling intimidated by the previous curators who had accomplished so much and had interesting topics to tweet about from week to week. But I was assured that they were all excited to hear what I had to say, tweeting from the perspective of a Digital Media student in Limerick.
I basically live tweeted my daily schedule. Whether they wanted to or not, everyone got to hear all about the different modules I’m taking, the food I ate, and my ongoing problems with my heating-less and slug-infested house. I’d like to think it was mildly entertaining at least.
– and getting responses such as “Put it in a buttermilk carton” and “Label it Experiment B”. I loved interacting with people from all around the world of all different backgrounds, cultures and ages.
I also chatted regularly with the curators of other rotation accounts such as We Are Australia, I am Europe and People Of Limerick. Not forgetting my number one gal Estrid who was looking after Sweden for the week. We interacted with each other on a regular basis to share our experiences with curating our accounts.
It was also a wonderful opportunity to showcase Limerick and its university, my talented friend Aislin happily let me use the pictures she took around campus and of the local scenery.
I decided from the beginning that I wasn’t going to use the account to generate discussion on current events or to gain an insight into people’s political and social views even though I might have liked to. I wanted to use the account to just tweet about the daily life of a typical Irish college student while trying to be as lighthearted and entertaining as possible. I’m sure they were all sick of hearing about the water charges anyway!
And I’m sure people enjoyed my daily pug pictures:
Even my very intrigued mother got to have a say:
Curating the Ireland account was just about the best thing ever. I enjoyed it to such a ridiculous extent, it just made every aspect of my otherwise ordinary week so exciting. I tried not to let it get to my head but people did have to tell me “Ok Nessa, we get it, you’re the Twitter embodiment of the nation”.
I’d like to thank Darragh and anyone else involved with the Ireland project for giving me the opportunity to do this and creating one of the greatest and most interesting experiences I’ve ever had. I made so many new friends and connections, enhancing my social media participation and interactions ten fold!
I strongly encourage anyone who’s interested to put themselves forward for curating the account, it’s such a unique experience that you’ll never forget and you will learn so much.
All in all I hope I’ll be remembered as the girl who used the account to make top quality lobster jokes.