Monday, 20 August 2012

Twitter: Why I might not follow you back

It can hurt if you follow someone on twitter and they dont follow you back.  Certainly if you know them.

Often I torment over whether I should follow someone when they follow me.  Sometimes I will err on giving them a temporary follow but reserve the right to unfollow them later if their twitter stream (what they tweet) is noisy or not interesting to me.  One often feels compelled to do the decent thing and reciprocate with a follow.  In the early days of twitter it used to be good manners to follow back, especially as we felt kindred being early adopters of this strange service.  Now, not so much.

The problem is, twitter is only useful if the content is interesting to you.  And I personally get diminishing marginal utility on anything past 250 follows (people I follow).  Past this number it becomes too noisy.

So this gets me onto the point of this post: Just because I dont follow you, doesnt mean i dont like you.  Hell, I may even love and adore you.  in person.  on twitter, not so much.  So please do not take offense.

So what are the reasons I dont follow people on twitter:

  1. What you have to say on twitter is not of interest to me.  This doesnt mean you dont have valuable things to say.  Likely you do, just not to me.
  2. You dont tweet content, only conversation.  I'm not into conversing on twitter.  it is the wrong medium for this type of communication in my opinion
  3. You are only a voyeur, not a participant.  That is fine, but clearly there is no point following you
  4. You tweet too much.  This would make my twitter stream too noisy if I were to follow you.  Very few people get away with this.  Kaya Dlanga is the very rare exception.  He has taken on the role of a social commentator and seemingly speaks for an important demographic of South Africa.  Be warned, you are unlikely to be successful doing this.
  5. You self promote.  This used to work in the early day of twitter.  The humblebrag was par for the course back then.  Now, not so much.
Any other reasons?  Please let me know and I will add them if I agree.
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