Friday, 30 October 2009

Ten commandments of Twitter

I tweet occasionally both for business and personal use. My professional Twitter account doesn't get a lot of use; I'm more of a voyeur looking out for useful links or tips related to my line of work. Café Chick tweets a few times a day. I don't profess to say much that is profound. To be honest, I'm still not entirely sold on the whole Twitter idea, but continue to dip my toe in the lukewarm waters of what is known as the Twittersphere, along with all the other twits out there.

While I find Twitter to be mostly harmless, there are some aspects of it which quickly drive me up the wall, or towards the 'block' button. I block somewhere around 1 in 3 new followers. No, I don't wish to see photos of you naked or in suggestive poses. I carefully check out someone's profile before choosing to follow them, and very occasionally hit the 'unfollow' button. I know it doesn't do me any harm to have people following me, and accept that I choose to keep my tweets unprotected, but there are some accounts that I'd rather not have associated with mine. Here's how to make it onto my blocked list, in no particular order:

Café Chick's ten commandments of Twitter

Thou shalt not tweet entire television shows
Or movies. Or documentaries. Or concerts. I don't need/want a minute-by-minute update on Shortland Street, Fringe, or American Idol. I also don't need to know how long it is until each of these shows start in your time zone, ie a minute-by-minute countdown. Thank you.

Thou shalt not tweet entire blog posts
Instead of tweeting a novel in several 140-character chunks, please just tweet a link to your new blog post. I'd be happy to read it in one space, and prefer not to see it interspersed with other tweets along the way.

Thou shalt not synchronise Facebook and Twitter
If I am your Facebook friend, I'm interested in what you have to say on Facebook. If I choose to follow you on Twitter, ditto. I'd expect you to update your status on Facebook less frequently than Twitter. Please don't hit me with a double-whammy.

Thou shalt not tweet from iTunes
I don't need a notification every three minutes of what song you're now listening to, or that you have accidentally left iTunes playing while you have gone out shopping.

Thou shalt not use Twitter in place of instant messaging
In the age of Skype, MSN, iChat, and multitudes of other instant messaging applications (including direct messaging via Twitter), ongoing 1-1 messages between two individuals no longer need to be broadcast publicly. Private conversations should remain just that.

Thou shalt not tweet spam or advertising
Just because I say I've been to lunch in Lower Hutt, that's not an invitation for real estate agents to follow me and spam me with property for sale in the area. No thank you.

Thou shalt not tweet more than 5-10 times an hour
I'm interested in what you have to say, otherwise I wouldn't follow you at all, but do I need to hear from you more than 100 times in a single day?

Thou shalt not bribe followers
I have just one word for people who advertise via their blogs, newsletters, or other forums by saying "everyone who follows me is in to win a prize". The word is: sad. Surely this is not what Twitter is about?

Thou shalt not retweet more than they tweet themselves
Retweet occasionally if you feel a comment is worthy of it, but I'd rather read your original comments than have you report a whole screed of copies from other people. If I want to hear from others, I'll follow them directly.

Thou shalt not add me to your Mafia family
I don't actually know what you are talking about, so sending repeated invitations via Twitter is not going to get you (or me) very far.

Care to add any more commandments to my list?


Donna said...

I love it! And I'm sorry but I had to retweet the link LOL I think it was too great not to pass along!

Manaiakalani said...

Love your list. I have nothing to add to it because you have nailed every single one of my commandments. Yes to the Facebook immitating Twitter (or vice versa) Yes to the RTing more than giving original thoughts. Yes to being tweeted someone else's bad songs playlist etc etc.
Well done for putting this together

~JarieLyn~ said...

Ditto on your whole post. I could have written this verbatim.