I’m getting really frustrated with Twitter at the moment and it has nothing to do with the service itself but to the explosion in use. Since the start of the month I’ve received 50 new followers, very few of whom I’ve followed back. Some of it, I’m sure, is because I’ve been on the service a long time and am often on the front page of the followers list due to my ‘membership number’. I’m pretty much on my limit of people I’m following, the limit of how useful the tool is. For me, it is not a broadcast tool, it’s not a popularity tool, it’s a way to connect with friends and ‘friends’ (those online acquaintances who I know virtually, or want to know or find interesting). So here’s some of the reasons I will and won’t follow you. Everyone has different reasons – which is why I don’t feel aggrieved if someone does not follow me, if I don’t fit into their reasons for use, why would they?
- I follow you if I know you personally – and know you have a Twitter account. Recently I’ve not gone out and tried to discover accounts of everyone I know; I’ll come across them eventually
- I follow you if I know you virtually, having had interactions online with you
- I follow you if I’m met you and you mentioned Twitter, or your twittering about an event we’re both at. (for example, I started following a few new people after Over the Air.) I tend to review these after a while to see if we still have shared interests
- I follow you if someone I already follow starts to refer to to you and your tweets look interesting. Again reviewed after a while
- If you start following me, I rarely return the favour if I look at your numbers and seeing you are following 100’s or 1000’s and very few following you. You’re either promoting yourself or just started on the service and think that is the way to do it. If I don’t know you, I won’t follow.
- However, of you start following me, it looks like you are trying to learn how to use the system and you are following connected people, then I’ll see what you have to say
- I have blocked 2 kinds of accounts. Obvious promotion accounts for things I don’t like and people who I feel are creepy (that’s usually men who are following nothing but loads of women – they write in a certain way)
- I won’t follow promotion accounts in general, nor politicians, etc
There’s my list, that’s the sort of thinking I go through when I look at an account. It has to fit with what I can cope with and what I am interested in. If I don’t follow you after you connect with me, it’s not necessarily you, it’s probably me 😉