March 10, 2009

My Recent Twitter Thoughts...

Has anyone else found that recently they have been trimming the people they are following on Twitter? I have to be honest - I have...

I joined Twitter and have been using it for two main purposes:
  1. to connect with people and organizations to whom I feel a close connection
  2. to try to build connections with people that I feel I WANT to connect with for selfish reasons like professional development and networking
I have found that in many instances, instead of connecting with people through my Twitter presence, I have chosen to follow people, companies and organizations who are ONLY pushing information out about themselves - not building meaningful opportunities for me to connect with them. Notice I said "I have chosen..." I chose to follow them, and now I am choosing not to...

Who I am following has turned more into an RSS feed of the latest news and blog posts that people are doing, as opposed to a place where I can connect with real people who want to build connections with their followers. Some of the people/organizations/companies that I follow only want to promote their cause or product.

My solution - trim the fat. No more news feeds like AP's @Breaking_Newz or CNN's @politicalticker... No more random organizations I followed because I thought I'd be interested in what they had to say... No more celebrities like @The_Real_SHAQ and @lancearmstrong... No more people I followed only because they followed me first... I am done with them.

I posted a while back about Defriending and whether it was generational... I guess in this instance, I am falling into the Gen X category as opposed to the Gen Y category since I am starting to want more value from my connections as opposed to MORE connections.

As I open my desktop Twitter app, Twhirl, tomorrow to take a look at the early morning Tweets, I hope that this trimming will do me some good and get me excited about using this tool to connect with people once again.

A Disclaimer: I don't want you to think that I am berating the aforementioned organizations or news feeds for having presences on Twitter. A lot of people probably like it because they can have a running news feed or can connect with what's going on in the lives of their favorite celebrities. It's just not the way I want to use it any longer...

2 comments:

Ben Martin, CAE @bkmcae said...

I'm actually adding followers. I find twitter so easy to filter (and ignore when necessary) that I don't see much if any downside to having a ton of friends.

On the other hand, I blew away all 129 subscriptions in my Google Reader last night. Haven't had the time to read them and have been feeling guilty about the thousands of posts I needed to read. That was keeping me from reading anything. Now I'll slowly rebuild them and hopefully keep it at a manageable number.

Bruce Hammond said...

@Ben - Thanks a lot for the reply. I get where you're coming from, especially in terms of Google Reader. I am somewhat doing the same there, as I just don't have the time to read the seemlingly hundreds of posts that Brazen Careerist has daily for example...

While the stuff these feeds are providing are likely very useful, I just can't get to them all. The reason I keep them is because I can easily skim for subjects that interest me, and if none do, there is always the handy "Mark All as Read" button... I am using that more and more often lately.

As for Twitter, I am not opposed to following a lot of people per se, I guess I just need to be a little more strategic in who I am following rather than just following anyone that follows me, or the celebrities that I was talking about in the post. I slashed about 20 of the people I was following, and am finding it easier to deal with now.

Thanks again for the comment.