Wednesday, April 22, 2009

baby steps - what I've learned in my first two weeks on twitter

1. So this is where everyone's hanging out. I was beginning to wonder where all the people that used to poke me, throw things at me and ask me to forward stuff for them on Facebook had gone. They're all tweeting.

2. Mr. Hyatt is a very persuasive man. It was several of his blog posts that finally convinced me that joining Twitter might be a worthwhile thing to do.

3. People join Twitter for lots of reasons. This post even advises having Twitter goals. I've given some thought to mine - and realized they aren't as cut and dried as I originally thought.

4. The difference between a Retweet and a Reply and a Direct Message and where all these things live on my Twitter page. To worldly wise Twitter users I'm sure this all sounds painfully basic but in the early days I retweeted something but erased the URL I was forwarding, treated a Retweet like a reply, and tried to send a Direct message to someone I was following when he/she wasn't following me (it isn't possible). And of course there are all the mistweets - where the tweet goes and a split second later you realize, there's a typo or the link doesn't work. I usually delete and start again.

(Does anyone know, what happens to these mistweets? Do they hang around somewhere in the vapors - or what?)

5. Followers, following, do I reciprocal follow or not, block apparently smarmy types who follow me or not? I'm learning as I go. I've made a sort of rule of thumb: If someone I don't know starts following me, I look at the ratio of following to followers. If it's way out of proportion (following way more than followers), and especially if the web site doesn't work, I block.

6. I bless the day I found and installed Tweetdeck. Suddenly it all made sense and felt doable, mainly because in Tweetdeck you can make groups. I put all my writing friends in one group, friends and family in another, big names that I follow for all their good information (poobahs) in a third, news sites in a fourth. Facebook status updates appear in still another. It's all organized neatly in columns (never mind that the 'deck' takes up my whole desktop!)

(Perhaps you my FB friends and family are wondering why I've suddenly become responsive. It's because everything is there in one place with status updates chirping as they come in and your profiles just a click away.)

7. There's a blog devoted solely to Twitter (probably more than one), but I follow this one . There's lots to learn, but there's more than a little help online.

8. Twitter is fun, and addictive, and interesting... Wanna follow me?


Julana said...

Good grief. :-)

violet said...

Yikes, J, are you freaked out?

Julana said...

I am overwhelmed by all this technical stuff. It's just too much. A lot of my cousins are nwo on Facebook, so I've been watching it a little more.
My real life suffers, when I spend too much time on this stuff. I need some people to drink coffee with, face to face! Why don't you drop over? :-)

violet said...

I so hear you. I took a one-month course in Jan. called 'Defeating Self-defeating Behaviors.' One of mine was getting distracted by all the noise online (some of those distractions self-created, of course!). I'm putting some of the strategies I learned to work now more than ever, basically rationing my online time and turning off email when I work so the little 'bing' doesn't distract me. Needs discipline... a timer is a good thiing!

Julana said...

I'm cutting back my computer time, too. :-)

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