twitter rant

twitterokay, guys ‘n’ gals, i gotta get this off my chest.

as you know, i’m an avid twitter (over) user.  i love it.  and there are two things that have made me roll my eyes quite a bit lately.   it’s easier to pontificate on this on a blog, so i’m using this platform.  (as you can see, i already have way over 140 characters).


when you reply to someone, be specific.  how am i supposed to know what you’re talking about when i get a @reply that says, “that was great!”  WHAT was great?  if you’re afraid of the 140-character limit, one or two words will usually be enough.  for example, i could reply to robert hruzek from middle zone musings fame by saying, “right on re transparency!” and he’ll know what i’m talking about.

or you could do what i just did – you could include the link to the actual individual tweet.  you do this by clicking on the timestamp right underneath the tweet.  then you get something like vancouver’s famous miss 604’s tweet asking for links to events in vancouver.

DMs – direct messages

and the other thing?  impersonal, spammy direct messages or DMs.  direct messages show up in my email inbox, so it better be something that’s directly related to me as a person.  not as a consumer.  please DO NOT auto DM me, or send me a DM if i don’t know you to give me a “gift” of a video that plugs your ideas/services/product.  margaret mason has a good article on how to use twitter politely, including the use of DMs. pete quily is a great example of someone using DMs intelligently.  that’s pete from ADD strengths (the world’s best blog about ADD/ADHD – attention deficit disorder, or as i like to call it “the gift of chaotic attention”).

oh, and why do i give you all the links to these people?  is it just link bait?   i don’t think so.  it’s all about making connections.  that’s what social media is about.  making meaningful connections.  please help your fellow tweeple understand the connections.  tell them what you’re replying to.  and when you want to make a new connection, it really isn’t that difficult.  impersonal, meaningless DMs irritate me; retweeting and replying will get my positive attention.


  1. Good post and worthy rant.
    John and I were talking about the replies last night. Most of the time I try to just create a one-off hashtag to give reference so that my twitter stream isn’t simply pieces of conversations no one else can follow.

    I think clicking the “reply” button in Twitter to post your response really helps – as you suggested. Then people can find the original tweet pretty easily along the chain.

    Rebecca’s last blog post..Arthur Erickson Photo Tribute

  2. It is really weird to write and read rants and bad stories about popular sites but it is really very difficult to know all the culture there. I am always reluctant to use twitter and I am really confused. Although I read plenty of snippet on that but it is still beyond my limits.

  3. hey, i love a great, well-thought-out rant, isabella! although i’m not sure i can learn to write without capitals. 😀

    i’ve been guilty of forgetting to reference what i’m talking about many time, i’m afraid; but it’s good advice i’m gonna try to adhere to. nothing more frustrating that getting tweets that mean nothing without context. always makes me feel like the ol’ little gray cells are failin’ me.

    a tip o’ the hat to ya for the nod – especially that it was re: transparency!

    Robert Hruzek’s last blog post..View From the Top

  4. Although twitter is already been restricted to 140 words rule but I think there is need to make more rules about replies and DMs. It is hectic and horrible thing to tolerate all those shit DMs.

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