Friday, May 29, 2009

15 Reasons I may either Unfollow or NOT Follow you on Twitter

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Updated to 15 on 5/29/2009, newest entries first.

As I've come to better understand the massive potential of
Twitter, I've also become more particular about whom I follow and why. Along the way many of my Followees have managed to slip under the wire as my own personal filters have been sharpening.

New to Twitter as I may be, I've been an active participant and developer on the net since before it was made available to the mainstream, and the way people communicate has changed little. Even back in the days of
Usenet and IRC, spammers, pornbots and hackers were prevalent much the same as today. Spotting the difference between a User and a Luser wasn't much different.

So, this is the short list. I could extend it to 100; maybe even much further, but starting with 15 basics is a good primer and won't harm readers who suffer from the epidemic spread of

15 Reasons I may either Unfollow or NOT Follow you on Twitter

  1. You talk partisan politics often, angrily and offensively.
    I love talking politics, whether face to face or on the web, and I'm sure Twitter is a great medium for folks to do the same. That's not my personal use for Twitter. To each their own - for me, sorry, I don't need it in my stream.

  2. You constantly refer to yourself as a social media guru, or Twitter pro.
    I remember when people started tossing around the term "Webmaster" because they'd learned a bit of HTML. Social Media in it's current forum is much too new and changeable for anyone to have been able to lock down a definitive system well enough to produce metrics for any amount of time worthy of statistical forecasting for a solid business model. Too wordy? Of course. I'm a "pro". Next!!

  3. You're selling religion.
    Be spiritual, non-invasively. If you use your own faith as weapon to judge my own, you're out.

  4. You go on about your blinged out phone, your Benz, your 7 houses in the Hills and one in the Hamptons...
    You obviously care, but no one else does.

  5. You can get me 2 billion followers in 7 days and I'll get rich off of em, just like you did!
    (Thanks to @marcmawhinney for this suggestion.) You're a liar if you think you can do THIS for me. Need I say more?

  6. Your picture hasn't been set.
    Or it's a pile of cash. Hey, maybe it is you, but look at that: you're naked. Sorry. Best of luck with all the sticky followers.

  7. Your name is comprised of words like:
    Money, cash, free, sex, porn, livecam, nude, viagra, etc. I think you catch my drift.

  8. You auto-DM me when I follow you.
    Hey, I already did you the solid of bringing you into my fold - why do you have to mess that up with such impersonal automation? OK, some auto DMs seem innocuous enough. "Hi, thanks for following!" is much better than "Thanks for following, click here to get 8 million followers in three hours."

  9. Your tweets are full of foul language.
    The occasional F-bomb I can handle. If you decide to be nauseatingly foul for no good reason, POOF!

  10. You constantly lash out at me or others.
    Be nice. People don't like to follow assholes. There, that's my one racy word for this segment :)

  11. You constantly push your own product, service or blog, and tweet about nothing else.
    'Nuff said.

  12. You're never positive. Ever.
    Nobody likes doom and gloom all the time.

  13. Your bio is empty and you live "nowhere".
    So, what are you trying to hide? Next!

  14. You haven't Tweeted in months.
    There isn't much value there, is there?

  15. You are never "Live".
    Many of us use some or other form of automation to get our tweets out there, but please stop in now and then and be human. Thank folks for their Tweets and their reTweets. People can absolutely tell the difference.


Jillian said...

Hey, this a great blog post! Thanks for writing it. I think it's exactly what many people need to hear.

Tom said...

You're welcome! Glad you enjoyed it!

majda said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
majda said...

agree complitely!

Ally said...

I agree with all 10!

Scott said...

Great blog! Here is a reason I unfollow: Excessive tweeting! What they say is not that interesting and they are now clutter.

Wentland Paul said...

Old IRC Hand. Great stuff...

Michelle said...

I couldn't agree more --

Bookman said...

This is helpful, except for the final recommendation to "thank people for their retweets." All that empty courtesy usually smacks of self-promotion and just clutters up the update stream.

Erik said...

I tend to unfollow people who excessively tweet about twitter.

Ex-English Major said...

Great stuff... I'll stay tuned for the Top 50 list. I also agree with Scott that excessive uninteresting tweets becomes clutter -- unfollow! Maintaining the list is just another part of community building.

Avery said...

I'm so glad to know that I'm not the only one who doesn't automatically follow people and thinks quality is more important than the number of followers. As for excessive tweeting, if someone has 20+ tweets over the span of a few hours--especially if they're uninteresting--I opt not to clutter my feed. Thanks Tom!

Julie said...

That's pretty close to mine! Along with #2, anybody's bio who consists of "I love marketing!" is pretty much guaranteed not to hold my interest.

Chris Johnson said...

Funny...You should see the second (anti-twiter as big brother) post down on

Michelle said...

I would like to add, Your twitter stream is full of drama! I don't want to read hundreds of tweets about the slow death of your marriage. I also don't want to read ANY tweets about what your kid did in his diapers. EVER.

mike said...

Put It up on The Quote Wall, It's a winner!

Nedslag said...

Hi read your tips and I liked them. BW from Tindra66 from Sweden at Twitter

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