Sunday, May 03, 2009

Reasons I will and won't follow you back on Twitter

First of all, let me explain why I don't subscribe to the "it's only fair/polite to follow someone back if they are following you" rule. I feel like everyone has a right to decide what they wish to see in their twitter stream. I do try to read every tweet on the page, and I hate scrolling through tens of tweets to get to something interesting to me. I also don't think it's fair of me to force my tweets on you if you don't want them. Simple as that.

I will probably follow you back if any of these words appear in your bio

  • CFS/ME/Fibro/chronically ill
  • crafter/beader/make jewelry/knit/crochet
  • writer - possibly. Depends on what you write.
  • Artist - see writer

or if there's something really unique, funny, or that strikes a real chord with me in your bio.

I will probably also follow you if 2 or all of the following things occur your page of posts:

  • You post something funny or really interesting that came from your own head.
  • You have a few good quality replies to people - more than just: @soandso thanks! or @whoever ;D
  • You've posted a link that find interesting enough to click on.

Reasons I will definitely not follow you

All you post is links and promos to your business. This includes artists, writers and crafters as well as internet marketers and typical business people. I do like to look through etsy shops, but I can do that on my own, without subscribing to your advert tweets. I follow a lot of etsy/artfire etc. artists, but the difference is, they talk to me. And tweet their thoughts. And sound like real people instead of commercials.

You don't interact. I look through your profile page, and all I see is links and tweets. I don't care how good your quotes are, I'm here to interact. I can find good quotes on the internet.

You are an internet marketer/SEO/work-from-home promoter/public speaker on these things. Ugh. I have issues with money, and I don't want to hear about how much you made this week doing nothing but sitting on your ass. Your page is full of links to your shady internet MLM businesses and retweets from Tony Robbins. I don't know exactly why, but I don't trust you a whit and the picture of you with microphone in hand makes me feel nauseous.

You are 100% geek boy and talk about nothing but tech, apps, platforms, etc. I use the tech I need to, learn about it when I need to, but don't like it for it's own sake. I'm also not into gaming, though it looks fun, and the last code I wrote was in DOS on my grandma's Commodore 64 in 1986. I do like gadgets, but I hear about those from everybody else too. After all, we're all on the internet, using tech. But I like nature too, and making stuff with my hands, and going out for coffee without cellphones. Truth be told, I don't understand 90% of what's written in your bio or your tweets.

Your picture looks like a phone-sex ad. I'm not into phone sex, and only 25% bisexual. Why on earth did you follow me in the first place? I'm not a girly girl and I don't want to discuss your iphone, shopping or getting your nails done.

You think you are a guru. All your tweets are about light and being one and destiny and great rainbows of virtuous mother milky life lessons. Usually, your page is full of quotes and the occasional cryptic response to an honest question. You may have let your hair and beard grow to disgusting lengths, but that does not make you wiser than me. I'm on my own path, I've never had a teacher other than Life, and I don't think I want to.

You are nobody, yet. You have less than a pageful of tweets, and no bio. I don't know anything about you. Come back when you have a visible personality.

You are a hard-core 'must save everybody' Christian. I've heard the good news already, thanks. I'm a Buddhist, I've come to Buddhism through years of contemplation, study and struggle. Nothing you say is going to change my mind, and your bubbly "i love Jesus"-ness just annoys me.

All you do is Retweet everyone else. That makes me want to follow the people you retweet, possibly, but not you.

All you do is post links. If some of your links are interesting, this makes it hard to not follow you, but I like to follow real people who use their own words. If none of your links are interesting to me (see 100% geekboy), then you are uninteresting to me.

Words in your bio that turn me off and make me not want to follow you:

SEO
Internet Marketer
Guru
"I love to partay!"
Jesus-loving
God-fearing
homework

you get the picture

Reasons why I might not follow you. If I'm on the fence, this tips me towards "no".

You are under 25. Traditonally the Twitter demographic has been primarily older than this, and I like it that way. Older people have experiences and wisdom to share, are friendlier, less needy, and generally realize that they aren't the center of the universe and don't know everything. Not every young person is so undeveloped or self-absorbed, of course, so youth can be mediated by mature-sounding tweets, creativity and/or a wizened perspective. No offense, I've just got nothing in common with you if you are in highschool and worrying if your size 6 butt looks fat, and want to talk about how that guy from Twilight is sooooooooooo hot (he's totally not). Or you are in university and you just want to "partay!"

You're a dating coach. I do follow one, but his mission is to get guys to see how women think and what they want, in a really honest, genuine way. I like to cheerlead him when he gets it right. I defintely won't follow you if your business to is to teach guys how to be a "player". Game never worked on me, not ONCE, and I think it's a ridiculous way to approach relationships, even one-night relationships.

You're a bot. Like I said, I'm here to interact. I don't follow bots unless they regularly inform me of things that I'm really really interested in. I certainly won't follow bots if they spew something every minute, no matter how good the cause.

You use a bot. There's some apps out there now that allow you, a normal tweeter, to send messages while you are away. If you do this properly I probably won't notice. If you don't, I get a spew of your messages all at once, which fills up my page and is really annoying. Again, I don't care how good your quotes are. I dont' get any benefit if I read ten poignant sayings in a row. I need them spread out so when they occur, they make me stop and think. And if I want to reply, I have to wait until you come online again in 12 hours for you to answer me.

This is just my personal opinion and you are free to agree or disagree. I came up with these as a result of actual twitter use and real decisions about whether or not to follow people. I'm sure there's some I forgot, but this is the basics.

Share It

Disclaimer

I sometimes write things that I don't really mean or believe. These are not to be taken literally, nor as definitive statements about me or my beliefs. Thoughts and emotions are transient, and I reserve the right to change my mind, generalize, exaggerate, give strong opinions, or write other possibly offensive statements. I don't lie, but I may say something that's not true to check whether I believe it or not, or to make a point. Call it creative license. This is my blog, and do have the right to say what I want. I'm using it in creatively therapeutic ways. Whatever the reader may think of me and my words, please believe that my core intentions are always good and I never willingly hurt anyone.