Chef Jenn Louis notes that chefs love to be stimulated, and the visual feeds are great ways to go beyond your local area. (She was recently selected as a Food & Wine chef of note, I believe)
Suzanne Goin observes there are pro and con elements:
I was totally afraid of Twitter but it's turned out to be a lot of fun. I'm loving the conversation between everyone that follows each other. And I can now see how it enhances our special dinners, introducing new menu items, and publishing photos of dishes and our wonderful staff. It's something that I can do during my late night down time or when traveling. The only thing I don't like about it is when someone asks for some advice or comments and I can't reply in a timely way, but I try to reply as quickly as I can.
Scott Anderson of Elements in Princeton observes that you can get instant feedback, esp at special dinners, etc. I noticed huge amount of Tweeting and texting, as well as semi-pro photo layouts on various tables at the Curtis Duffy, John & Karen Shields, Aki & Alex dinner. (People brought colored backgrounds, supplemental light, etc.) It was a little surprising to me that the chef was reading tweets from people 20 and 30 feet away, very 21st century.
Can you give me something specific about a case where you've benefited from it?
It's often hard to stay clued in on events like guest chefs dinners, and Twitter is really effective in letting you know. You get a realtime feel of what's going on almost anywhere in the country. I'm more connected to my peers now than I ever was.
Is it your main source now?
Yeah, I would say that, actually. I also like to see who other chefs talk to.
Join or Ignore?