Apr 15, 2008

12 Ways To Improve Your Twitter Experience*

*or at the very least, mine.

Following up on the success of my "10 Things I Hate About Twitter" post:
  1. Do not post “Good morning Twitter peeps!” the second you wake up. Or some even more annoying variation like “Yo Tweeps!” (The latter is especially true if you are white, upper middle class and/or a graduate of an Ivy League college.)
  2. In fact, white people should studiously avoid tweeting words like “Peeps!” “Yo!” “Da Boyz!” and other misguided attempts at urban Black slang. Remember how your dad sounded when he said “awesome!” Exactly.
  3. If you mistype, do not bother to correct your grammar or spelling in a follow up tweet. No one is judging you.
  4. Tweeting that you’ve reached a new milestone in the number of people following you is always in poor taste.
  5. Please limit tweets promoting your recent blog posts to no more than two a day.
  6. Twitter has a direct message function. Please use it for private conversations, e.g. “@johndoe: You left your socks in my apartment last night.”
  7. If you think it's boring, chances are I will too.
  8. Live posting from SXSW is one thing. Live posting from your dinner with your college buddies, quite another.
  9. It’s not a contest. You don’t get extra points for posting the most obscure link of the day.
  10. Twittering about twittering about Twitter is a lot like those stoned 9th grade conversations about “what if the earth is really just like a speck of dust in some giant universe?”
  11. Twitter is not a mobile version of weather.com or Expedia. If I want hourly weather reports or flight updates, I have other options.
  12. Idolizing rock stars is normal behavior in our society. Idolizing internet stars is just creepy. Refrain from words like “genius” “brilliant” and “Seth” and you should be cured in no time.
Hat tip to Adweek's Brian Morrissey for suggesting the post and adding some tips of his own.

17 comments:

Cam Beck said...

Toad - This post made me smile. Since I'm live tweeting from Ad:Tech, I had to take a break to make sure I wasn't committing any blunders. :)

Toad said...

@Cam - Thanks. I was tempted to change #8 to "Live Posting from AdTech quite another" but then realized that you, me and about 5 other people would get why that was funny.
Glad you enjoyed it.

Mario Vellandi said...

Thank-you for this post! Its essential message of cut-out the crap, is so important because clutter in Twitter is bad for all of us.

Aaron said...

Yep, good tips. Getting a lot more out of Twitter now I've gotten more selective with who I follow.

Toby said...

Toad - not only did your post bring a laugh or two bu there are truths to what you said. Ordering a skinny latte .. oops this a blog not a tweet .. sorry - lol!

Roxanne Darling said...

I'm thinking about a coaching program for Twitter - several of your items IMO are a direct result of insecurity and awkward social graces. Let's face it there are no popular Miss Manners for geeks are there?

I think one reason people sign in and sign off (the good morning, good night, they are closing the plane doors tweets) are so others are not offended when they drop in or out of ongoing conversations.

So #13 might be "Everyone drops in and out; no need to announce your coming and going, others can always follow the feed if necessary. It's archived."

PS Twitter was happening at ad:tech, but not like it was at sxsw - your gut instinct was right on!

Steve Woodruff said...

Yo! Good morning Toad and Peeps! Twitter is just awesome - check out all my followers on this partly sunny day while I order appetizers with my buddies at LeClairs on 47th St. (much needed post - good job). And check out these six posts I just put up...

Anonymous said...

"No one is judging you."

Except someone is. Obviously.

Antman said...

I dig twitter, but rules/etiquette? It's very nature is random, so I'm thinkin' who's random is right and whose is wrong. Random is Random! Curious of Twitters life span? Does it have legs? I'm on the fence, but for sure have no idea what it will look like in 24 months. Can't imagine it will be the same.

oddpodz said...

Thank you so much for this post. Made me laugh. I left Twitter for awhile because I was so tired of hearing about what people had eaten for lunch, or what they were watching on TV. Still on the fence about it's value, but hope that less of the 'boring' stuff will be Twitter-ed about.

Jack Baty said...

Yessir. Yours is better collection than my list of 5 Things you Should Not Twitter.

I especially like numbers 9 and 12. And who's "Seth?" :)

Niels said...

Pretty basic etiquette for me..

Seth Godin doesn't Twitter, so yeah, which Seth?

Toad said...

@Jack & Neils: Hi and welcome. While Seth Godin does indeed use Twitter: http://twitter.com/sethgodin - (though mostly as a one-way conversation since he doesn't follow anyone) - the joke was a reference to the numerous times people who likely don't know him make reference to his blog posts or other writings while referring to him as "Seth" as if her were their close friend.

Hope that helps.

And Niels, while I agree the list is pretty basic, I still see every single one of these "rules" violated, pretty much daily.

PS: How did you all happen to land here- I've noticed an upsurge of traffic, mostly from Europe today, but can't seem to track the referring page, so I'm wondering where the link is from. Thanks.

Niels said...

Hello Toad,

Thanks for the link to his Twitter, I read all his blog posts and he mentioned various times that the didn't use it. But I guess he meant he doesn't use it as other people are using it :)

Let's hope people start using Twitter more courteously, although reading some random stuff is ok you can always un-follow.

I got to your post through Coding Horror's Tweet

Have a nice day!

Toad said...

@Niels: Thanks for the quick response! And for solving the mystery. I must personally thank Jeff Atwood (Coding Horror)

Niels said...

I just saw that Seth Godin only announces his new blog posts on his Twitter feed and nothing else... That's why I have RSS :)

Jack BAty said...

I also found your post via Atwood's (I call him "Jeff") tweet.