Which Twitter are you using?

     We’re all on the same Twitter feed, aren’t we?  No, actually we each have our own customized feeds of those we choose to follow and I think we don’t realize how much these can differ. So is there really any such thing as a universal Twitter expert, guru, coach? Is there an Emily Post on Twitter that covers everyone? I don’t think so. You need to find and follow the people relevant to your particular community or communities. There are many different communities on twitter, and like communities anywhere they differ in customs and manners. Some people just endlessly tweet what they do all day, as so many people wrongly perceive Twitter is all about. Communities of online merchants see nothing wrong with talking about and promoting their offerings, public relations and marketing people see nothing wrong with endless self-examination of the effects of social medias on their fields. Charity fundraisers see nothing wrong with their endless appeals. Geeks chatter endlessly about the latest apps and gadgets, musicians connect and promote, writers network and chat. The list goes on and on.

     Some of the more well-known Twitter ‘personalities’ cross over many of these Twitterverses, but I’ve noticed lately a slightly schizophrenic tendency in their tweets and blogs as they try be universal to an increasingly diverse following. You can’t be all things to all people, as they say. And one set of rules of behavior won’t fit very different communities on Twitter. The way people use Twitter is their own affair, and shouldn’t be crammed down other’s throats like ‘the one true religion.’

     This is not to say there isn’t overlap, or that one is limited to one type of community. It’s my opinion one should broaden and connect with all types of people. I’m all over the place, and I think that has helped me realize how many different Twitters there are out there. And how different in intent and usage they are.

     Do you think there is some universal etiquette or set of customs applicable to everyone on Twitter?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.

16 Responses to Which Twitter are you using?

  1. mfeige says:

    Love the post Roger!

    I think you bring up a really interesting point and I find myself as approach my first anniversary of twitter userdom that I am in lots of these circles and would like to stay in many of them. While I feel I could amass more followers and create a certain community if I chose one of my interests and just tweeted about that I love the diverse sausage like twitter community I have and wouldn’t want to lose that in anyway. Thanks for the great post!


  2. My feed looks a lot like my friends in real life… a huge variety of people and interests. I like it that way. I do know of people who have multiple accounts, one for each interest. My philosophy is simply that I am not simple. I have many sides, many interests and like to feed my soul… and my twitter feed… with every morsel of knowledge from a variety of “food” groups. I bet your feed is like your friends too, Roger : )

    • booksbelow says:

      One of the things I used to love about having a physical book store (which I no longer do) was the great diversity among the customers, I loved them all from the mayor of our town to the street people who came in to stay warm. Being in a university town, I made friends through the store with people in all types of fields. Missed that badly, but Twitter has become a similar connector for me to all types of people.

  3. Auntsuger says:

    My twitter feed is like my Ipod or Pandora stations. Filled with everything and anything. If they make me happy, if they make me smile, definitely if they make me snort, but also if they make me think, I will follow. Twitter has opened the world to me – literally. I am the first to admit I’m “The arrogant American,” normally my world is only as big as I can see with my eyes. My twitter feed opens my world to so much more: more laughter, more joy, more tears, all the juiciest parts of life.

    • booksbelow says:

      There seems to be a strong thread in all the comments, that like you state, Twitter has opened up a diverse community for many people. Glad there is more laughter and joy!

  4. Jennyablue says:

    My feed holds a melting pot of tweeples. I choose to follow based on my varied interests, true. I read the tweeps’ posts and url if one exists. If I like what I read, I follow along, then send off a tweet of my own to that tweeter. Usually, that is when the twitter fun begins for me. Twitter life friends need to be nurtured, as with real life friends. If I’ve chosen well, then nurturing occurs naturally. There are so many funny, interesting tweeps, discovering who they are through their tweets keeps me coming back for more. Thx for your post. 😉

  5. nsedef says:

    Great post, Roger. Though I joined as a “business” user, I have found that my Twitter experience has been most enriched by those I meet who are outside my industry…and from people like you. I’m finding I’m even more likely to check in on my Twitterfeed as my list of friends and followers continues to evolve in diverse directions.

  6. The term ‘expert’ is what’s confusing. I think anyone using these terms are trying to turn their Twitter bios into Yellow Pages ads and will say just about anything to drive traffic to their site so the phone rings. These tactics include, but aren’t limited to, lying, embellishing and using buzzwords that sound important. I am a freaking award-winning copywriter. But i don’t say that anywhere in any of my online bios. Why? Because it’s not that important. If someone’s going to hire me – they’re going do do so because of things I’ve said here that lead them to that choice. Not because I say I’m great. To me, any iteration of the term ‘expert’ in a Twitter bio is a red flag. But then again, I’m not buying. Maybe they’re just smarter than we are?

    • Danny Brown says:

      I once won a medal for swimming when I was seven. Maybe I should put that on my bio? Then I can catch all the fish that the social media experts tell us we should be fishing for. 😉

  7. CTK1 says:

    Most excellent! Finely tuned points Roger. I imagine there can’t quite be a universal anything for a social networking site with so many loonies joining daily.
    So many branches, the new one being the leaders of the
    ‘trending topics’ where a no holds barred kind of free-for-all let’s lose. Where did they come from, I often wonder. I love them. And enjoy all the other groups and most seem to merge together. Regardless, few play by the same rules and I’m happy about that!

  8. Kat Barton says:

    Great post and observations. It is something I wondered about, and also came to the same conclusion. It’s like 6 degrees of separation. I love it!

  9. Danny Brown says:

    Hey Roger,

    Nice take and spot on about folks trying to be the shoes that fit everyone. It’s not going to work – all it does is cramp your feet and make you walk funny.

    I’m a firm believer that as long as it’s not breaking Twitter’s Terms of Service, then anything goes. If it’s hurtful or something you don’t like, we have that wonderful option of Unfollow and Block. 🙂

  10. @DoreenatDMS says:

    Hi, Roger — i saw on my feed that @DannyBrown tweeted the link here. Nice post. I’m somewhat similar to you in that who I follow and what I tweet about is diverse and does go back and forth between professional and personal. I recall recently mentioning to a Twitter friend as well in a blog post the fact that since being on Twitter there hasn’t been a day that’s gone by where I haven’t laughed out loud, felt supported, learned something new, and be motivated to take action. And, I’d guess that I’m not alone in that – whether someone is tweeting for business, personal, charity, ‘geeky’, etc., reasons So at the risk of sounding too ‘gushy’, altruistic, or naive, if anything, it can be an opportunity to impact the human condition – personally and globally – by opening yourself up to voices other than your own. Amazing.

  11. Deni Kasrel says:

    Same as in life, I generally go by the to each his/her own motto (so long as you are not doing something harmful). A la Danny Brown’s comment, because we choose who to follow (or not) we can all make our own decisions as to what are tolerances, interests etc. are the Twitosphere.

    That said, I do think a good rule to follow is to not post something on Twitter that you wouldn’t want printed in the newspaper — as in made public to the masses — because unless you are DMing, whatever you tweet enters the public stream.

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