Are there really no dos and don’ts on twitter?

At the recent Mums On the Go with Three event several ppl asked about twitter and said they were slightly scared of it. I found that bewildering, but on further discussion it appeared they were afraid of transgressing against unwritten rules of etiquette. Most of us assured them that there are no such rules, other than of general politeness anyway, but since then I’ve been thinking.

There are things that really wind me up. And I think they wind other ppl up as well. Certainly if I discuss them I get ppl expressing the same opinion as me, though it’s possible that I’m just too scary and other ppl daren’t disagree ;)

So, don’t do the auto dm. Tbh, I don’t even know how to do this. What I mean is when you start following someone, sometimes you’ll receive a DM shortly afterwards that says something like “thanks for following, looking forward to getting to know you” maybe even with a link to a website. I’m sorry, but this just makes you look self important. Either say hi to new followers yourself, or don’t, but don’t do the auto DM. The other thing that is annoying about it is that if you haven’t followed back the person can’t respond that way, which just seems rude.

Don’t RT ff lists with you on it just for the sake of it. Or indeed general mentions of yourself. This is the equivalent of repeating a conversation loudly, you just wouldn’t do it would you? You wouldn’t stand in a room at a party and repeat it every time someone mentioned your name, so don’t do it on twitter.

Don’t ask someone to DM you without checking you are following them first. It saves time, if you’re a brand or pr it looks way more professional to get it right first time, particularly if you’ve just asked a competition winner to get in touch.

Do make friends. Jump into conversations, they aren’t private, they’re on the internet. If someone reacts as if they are private, consider unfollowing them.

There’s something not to get hung up on. Don’t worry about whether someone is following you or not. Some ppl use lists so could be reading your tweets regularly without following (remember what I said about not being private!), sometimes twitter throws a wobbly and unfollows for the fun of it. And sometimes ppl just need to wind it back in. It’s rarely personal. And if it is, there’s always the block option.

If privacy worries you, either don’t use twitter, or consider protecting your tweets. They are still on the internet, but you have to approve following requests.

Above all, do have fun :)

Did I miss anything out? Let me know in the usual place. Or on twitter :)

About Jax Blunt

I'm the original user, Jax Blunt I've been blogging for ten years, give or take, and if you want to know me, read me :)

Comments

  1. The only one I’d add is my bug bear hate. The validation DMs which ask you to validate your real before that person will follow you. Two words. F*** off! lol!
    Hayley recently posted…Theme Parking on a budget!My Profile

    • Oh goodness, I think I’ve had those validation DM’s a couple of times. I just @ them back pointing out that if they’d taken the time to read my timeline in the first place they could decide for themselves if I was real or no. *insert expletive of choice here*
      Ruth recently posted…Silent SundayMy Profile

      • I assume that they are automated, and that the ppl involved consider themselves too busy/ important to check out timelines :(

    • Those are annoying. I’ve only had one – I unfollowed promptly!

  2. I would like to add do ignore when ppl use 4 or b4 or other suchlike usually not bad spellers – 104 characters is not many when you have a lot to say :)
    Louise Strachan recently posted…Russell Crowe and I side by sideMy Profile

  3. ISTM that you ahev rather confirmed their feeling that there are unwritten rules of etiquette :-) (it’s a social space – it’s to be expected) :-)
    Daddybean recently posted…life is too busy!My Profile

  4. The one I’d add is this: Whenever you re-enter your timeline, check your @mentions and reply, if appropriate, to new ones. We’re not all on twitter at the same time, which is probably just as well!
    fireflyphil recently posted…5 June 2011- Silent SundayMy Profile

    • That’s a good tip, Phil, thanks. Using twitter for android I get notified of mentions and messages – if I’m really short of time, that’s all I check.

  5. Very interesting – I have a personal rule to unfollow anyone who uses too much unecessry profanity (I don’t mind the f word if you’re really pissed off just not streams of it for no reason), tell me about thier bodily functions, or sends dirty jokes, etc… I’m just not interested
    MIdlife Singlemum recently posted…SilentSundayMy Profile

  6. P.S. Unless the jokes are extremely funny!
    MIdlife Singlemum recently posted…SilentSundayMy Profile

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