Last year on 16 June, Bloomsday, 44 brave souls joined forces to tweet a highly condensed version of James Joyce’s Ulysses, front to back. Nearly 600 tweets flowed for 24 straight hours from a single Twitter account (now known as @2lysses). That phenomenal experiment joined Joyce fanatics scattered around the world in a virtual Bloomsday celebration that brought Ulysses to a new audience in a very unusual way.
That 2011 Twitter experiment did have some drawbacks, however, such as limiting the number of participants and the total number of tweets. In the last few weeks leading up to Bloomsday 2011, we had to turn away dozens of interested tweeps. So this year, in honor of the liberation of Ulysses from copyright in the European Union and its 90th birthday, we have concocted an all-new way for everyone (yes, Everyone!) to join in the Bloomsday 2012 Twitterfication of Ulysses. Here’s the deal:
* There is no limit on how many people can join the project this year.
* There are no limits on how many tweets you can post (within the natural confines of Twitter) or on which episodes you choose to tweet.
* You can tweet your favorite bits of an episode or post links to images, blogs, or videos related to specific episodes or scenes. (Make sure you know what episodes your tweets are from. Here’s a simple key.)
* This year you tweet from your own account whenever you want on 16 June (although early in the morning is best so others around the world can enjoy your posts).
There are a few new twists, however, to make this thing work:
* Keep each tweet to no more than 127 characters (including spaces).
* We will be using #hashtags to pull everyone’s tweets together (that’s why each tweet is shorter than 140 characters).
* In order to concentrate the worldwide burst of Ulysses tweets on Bloomsday, our #hashtags will be kept secret until the big day.
If you’d like to join the 2012 Ulysses Twitterfest, just drop me a line (firstname.lastname@example.org) and you are in! I’ll send you project updates and the #hashtags on Friday, 15 June. — Steve Cole, Baltimore, Md.