The secret to Twitter

I’ve been talking to lots of people about Twitter. Why is it so addictive? Why do new tools, shipped for it, like Quotably was tonight, get passed around so fast and talked about so much?

I’ve gone through stages with Twitter. At some point I thought it was important to get lots of followers. But lately I’ve been telling people that the secret to Twitter isn’t how many followers you have, but how many people you are following. Tonight Sheryl asked me to explain more: “why is the secret how many people you follow? Why is it important to follow so many people?”

Here’s why:

1. Getting followed just means you’re popular. Yes, that’s cool, but it hardly will make you interesting. Paris Hilton will have more Twitter members than I will, when she joins.
2. Getting followed a lot might mean you’re using it for a publishing system. If all you have is followers what makes that different from owning a newspaper, a radio station, a TV station, or, even, a Web site? Hint: nothing.
3. If you’re just trying to get followed you’re probably just needing attention or you might be Jason Calacanis.

But what does following a lot of people say?

1. You’re trying to learn more.
2. You’re trying to meet more people.
3. You’re trying to be a better listener.
4. You’re communicating to the world that you’d like to be listened to (golden rule: treat people how you’d like to be treated).
5. You’re trying to find out about more stuff. More events. More stories.

Now, who would you rather hang out with? A person who only talks and doesn’t listen? Or a person who listens to as many people as he can?

I know I’d rather hang out with someone who listens to more people.

Oh, yeah, and many of us on Twitter have been getting messages like what Mike Arrington got tonight. Now, I really don’t care about people who unfollow me anymore. Go ahead. Doesn’t make me feel bad. But the more people I follow, the smarter I get, the more connected I get, the better the experiences I have in life (see previous post).

So, that’s my new story. The secret to Twitter is how many people are you listening to, not how many people are listening to you.

Agree or disagree?

Comments

  1. I follow over 3,000 people because I am interested in what they are doing. It just up sets me when people to tell me what to tweet about…

  2. Agree. I couldn’t bear for Twitter to be silent all day. I need the input. That said, I only follow about 200+ people; way too few, so I need to go make amends :)

  3. My question is, of those that you follow, how many of them do you have the “notifications on” set for? I’m using GTalk for my notifications and it’s pretty sweet, but I could imagine that following hundreds with notification set to on would be just too much. Just interested in what you’ve found since you follow many more than I do now.

  4. Agree. I couldn’t bear for Twitter to be silent all day. I need the input. That said, I only follow about 200+ people; way too few, so I need to go make amends :)

  5. My question is, of those that you follow, how many of them do you have the “notifications on” set for? I’m using GTalk for my notifications and it’s pretty sweet, but I could imagine that following hundreds with notification set to on would be just too much. Just interested in what you’ve found since you follow many more than I do now.

  6. That’s right.

    I don’t know why you are trying to dig Jason Calacanis. Have nothing against him, and have been following him for sometime, but maybe he is too obsessed to get 20 thousand followers that I would think his following you is almost no use since he only post, I think, but does not reply.

    You’re right. If you want to follow or be followed, it is important that you listen.

    Twitter is great because following people who post a dozen times a day for sometime gives you really an insight as to who the person is….

    Twitter is for small messages on the fly. A blog is more deliberate. Just like a psychologist will know more about you by asking you to respond to a word immediately rather than after a few seconds of thought.

  7. That’s right.

    I don’t know why you are trying to dig Jason Calacanis. Have nothing against him, and have been following him for sometime, but maybe he is too obsessed to get 20 thousand followers that I would think his following you is almost no use since he only post, I think, but does not reply.

    You’re right. If you want to follow or be followed, it is important that you listen.

    Twitter is great because following people who post a dozen times a day for sometime gives you really an insight as to who the person is….

    Twitter is for small messages on the fly. A blog is more deliberate. Just like a psychologist will know more about you by asking you to respond to a word immediately rather than after a few seconds of thought.

  8. Scoble… I think you nailed this one. The quality of the people you follow is what determines Twitter’s usefulness.

    It took me a while to figure that out, but now that I’ve started to build up a list of folks that I follow who write/ talk/ think about similar issues that I do, Twitter is immensely useful.

    Who needs Yahoo Answers when you can have Twitter responses in seconds?

  9. Scoble… I think you nailed this one. The quality of the people you follow is what determines Twitter’s usefulness.

    It took me a while to figure that out, but now that I’ve started to build up a list of folks that I follow who write/ talk/ think about similar issues that I do, Twitter is immensely useful.

    Who needs Yahoo Answers when you can have Twitter responses in seconds?

  10. I agree 100%. I think the interaction is important as well. Granted, you can’t interact with everyone, and many times responses and interaction aren’t expected, but using Twitter as a two, three, or 4 way communication tool is ideal.

    I think it is possible that major revolutionary (or evolutionary?) ideas will be initiated and incubated in a platform like Twitter.

  11. I follow a lot more people that people follow me. I have a nice core of people that talk back to me, but for the most part, I people watch on Twitter because I live in the middle of the .us, and it’s really hard to be around tech-loving people here.

  12. I agree 100%. I think the interaction is important as well. Granted, you can’t interact with everyone, and many times responses and interaction aren’t expected, but using Twitter as a two, three, or 4 way communication tool is ideal.

    I think it is possible that major revolutionary (or evolutionary?) ideas will be initiated and incubated in a platform like Twitter.

  13. I follow a lot more people that people follow me. I have a nice core of people that talk back to me, but for the most part, I people watch on Twitter because I live in the middle of the .us, and it’s really hard to be around tech-loving people here.

  14. Cool. I think this is a great insight to share, cause I had been trying to manage my followers/followed to parity for some non-rational aesthetic reason.

    I liked ReadWriteWeb Alex Iskold’s 5 ways to have fun with Twitter post:
    http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/5_ways_to_have_fun_with_twitter.php

    One of them referenced “Twitter personalities”:
    - Listener (many Followed)
    - Talker (many Followers)
    - Hub (many of both)

    I thought this was great, cause I’ve seen people with each of these patterns. You are a Hub.

    After reading this post I’m thinking its better to be a Listener than a Talker. But I think its best to be a Hub.

    So how do you efficiently process massive streams of data across multiple systems both online and in-person, travel, and still get to see your kids? If this is a learned skill please help us all be more like you!! If it is a gift or talent, then help us recognize if we have it or we don’t!

  15. I agree. But in return, people, more people will follow us. It’s a point of motives and intentions. Over all, a very good point.

  16. Cool. I think this is a great insight to share, cause I had been trying to manage my followers/followed to parity for some non-rational aesthetic reason.

    I liked ReadWriteWeb Alex Iskold’s 5 ways to have fun with Twitter post:
    http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/5_ways_to_have_fun_with_twitter.php

    One of them referenced “Twitter personalities”:
    - Listener (many Followed)
    - Talker (many Followers)
    - Hub (many of both)

    I thought this was great, cause I’ve seen people with each of these patterns. You are a Hub.

    After reading this post I’m thinking its better to be a Listener than a Talker. But I think its best to be a Hub.

    So how do you efficiently process massive streams of data across multiple systems both online and in-person, travel, and still get to see your kids? If this is a learned skill please help us all be more like you!! If it is a gift or talent, then help us recognize if we have it or we don’t!

  17. I agree. But in return, people, more people will follow us. It’s a point of motives and intentions. Over all, a very good point.

  18. Elliott: I type fast. :-)

    Seriously, not sure how to scale this much further than I am. I feel like a surfer sometimes. Just looking over all the inbound looking for patterns and seeing where they take me.

  19. Elliott: I type fast. :-)

    Seriously, not sure how to scale this much further than I am. I feel like a surfer sometimes. Just looking over all the inbound looking for patterns and seeing where they take me.

  20. Its not the quantity but rather the quality people you’d likely learn something from, and listen to and get listened at I’d add because if you keep on following say 3k+ which is irrelevant to your lifestyle or industry you’re likely end up being a myriad of sorts and unless one is in that flow of being with the people one ‘connects’ with, then following a random 3k would be futile.

  21. Its not the quantity but rather the quality people you’d likely learn something from, and listen to and get listened at I’d add because if you keep on following say 3k+ which is irrelevant to your lifestyle or industry you’re likely end up being a myriad of sorts and unless one is in that flow of being with the people one ‘connects’ with, then following a random 3k would be futile.

  22. Right there with you Robert.

    I just went through a marathon add back session and it was interesting to look through the various profiles to see how they were actually using the tool.

    So many interesting people to exchange thoughts & ideas with, but a lot of the friend / follower ratios kind of bugged me since I feel that building a network organically over a period of time reaps the best rewards.

    I try to give the benefit of the doubt though. I know what I’m getting out of it. Who am I to tell someone else how to use it?

  23. Right there with you Robert.

    I just went through a marathon add back session and it was interesting to look through the various profiles to see how they were actually using the tool.

    So many interesting people to exchange thoughts & ideas with, but a lot of the friend / follower ratios kind of bugged me since I feel that building a network organically over a period of time reaps the best rewards.

    I try to give the benefit of the doubt though. I know what I’m getting out of it. Who am I to tell someone else how to use it?

  24. I get what you’re saying. I mean the basic premise is pretty cut and dried. One must pay attention to learn. Listening is a skill most of us suck at.

    The problem? When you have 14000+ ‘friends’ who all want your ear, how do you pick and choose, and is it really possible to do justice to any one? I think, to me, it seems after a certain point what’s really happening is you’re focusing on a few and letting the masses sort of coast along. Maybe just doing damage control?

    Just my thoughts. Thanks for the mention, though. ;o)

    Sheryl Breuker

  25. What a totally awesome attitude and such a healthy way to look at the whole Twit thing.

    Actually I just saw this post because I follow you on Twitter. You’re soooooooo right about the learning aspect.

    A few weeks ago I didn’t really see the point of Twitter but now I’m learning as much, some days even more than I do from blogs.

  26. What a totally awesome attitude and such a healthy way to look at the whole Twit thing.

    Actually I just saw this post because I follow you on Twitter. You’re soooooooo right about the learning aspect.

    A few weeks ago I didn’t really see the point of Twitter but now I’m learning as much, some days even more than I do from blogs.

  27. I get what you’re saying. I mean the basic premise is pretty cut and dried. One must pay attention to learn. Listening is a skill most of us suck at.

    The problem? When you have 14000+ ‘friends’ who all want your ear, how do you pick and choose, and is it really possible to do justice to any one? I think, to me, it seems after a certain point what’s really happening is you’re focusing on a few and letting the masses sort of coast along. Maybe just doing damage control?

    Just my thoughts. Thanks for the mention, though. ;o)

    Sheryl Breuker

  28. I agree on this one Robert. I ended up on this post because of following you on twitter. Been following some influential people in the industry and I must say, I’ve learnt some tips already in a span of a few days.

    By the way, glad you enjoyed yourself at the party last night.

    How I wish some people here in Australia is using twitter more as well. I’ve been telling my friends about twitter and all I seem to get is blank faces. Pretty soon though (hopefully) – pretty soon.

    cheers,
    Armand

  29. I agree on this one Robert. I ended up on this post because of following you on twitter. Been following some influential people in the industry and I must say, I’ve learnt some tips already in a span of a few days.

    By the way, glad you enjoyed yourself at the party last night.

    How I wish some people here in Australia is using twitter more as well. I’ve been telling my friends about twitter and all I seem to get is blank faces. Pretty soon though (hopefully) – pretty soon.

    cheers,
    Armand

  30. I agree about following a large # of peeps, but I believe there is a balance between quantity and quality…I follow my friends and family because I want to know what they are up to and I follow people I don’t know to learn what’s going on in the world not necessarily to know they are about to go for coffee. I also believe in variety and diversity and am struggling to find people to follow that are not in technology…any pointers to non-tech peeps would be helpful. Thanks!

  31. I agree about following a large # of peeps, but I believe there is a balance between quantity and quality…I follow my friends and family because I want to know what they are up to and I follow people I don’t know to learn what’s going on in the world not necessarily to know they are about to go for coffee. I also believe in variety and diversity and am struggling to find people to follow that are not in technology…any pointers to non-tech peeps would be helpful. Thanks!

  32. Twitter is a new information hub. Used effectively, it’s like a BBS… RSS style. It’s SMS 2.0. It’s instant text broadcasting… and receiving.

    Good stuff indeed. Excellent perception.

  33. Twitter is a new information hub. Used effectively, it’s like a BBS… RSS style. It’s SMS 2.0. It’s instant text broadcasting… and receiving.

    Good stuff indeed. Excellent perception.

  34. It’s a nice theory Robert, but I’ll argue it’s flawed. You and I have had this running conversation going back to 2004 to my knowledge. Back then it was about you reading 1500+ RSS feeds. I can’ find the 2004 post, but look st http://ipadventures.com/2005/03/16/making-the-blogroll-hurt-less/ in 2005 and it’s referenced there as well.

    The reading more philosophy sounds nice, but I still argue nobody actually reads and digests that much information. Like a baleen whale, we wind up sucking down krill. It all tastes the same and nothing stands out. When there’s that much noise, the signal-to-noise ratio is skewed.

    I won’t argue that you don’t see things in the noise that stand out. Of course you do. And yes, you’re visible enough that a mention can make a huge difference for a company or person. But it’s still noise. The value, the *listening* to the voices, and the real understanding come at a far deeper level. Following too many people reduces them all to noise. The mass falls toward the lowest common denominator. And while we can unfollow people on Twitter, and many of us do, as humans, there’s a limit to our social circles.

    On the other hand, if you come out vocally saying Twitter isn’t social media for you, because you’ve taken the social relationship out by mass quantity, and you purely use it as a sieve to strain the krill/noise, then you could be right. I’m not sure that’s what the Twitter folks were hoping for, but they’ll take success where they find it (as will we all).

    It’s a topic I’d love to see in a panel discussion with folks who don’t hold with your view alongside you.

    Thanks for posting your thoughts.

  35. It’s a nice theory Robert, but I’ll argue it’s flawed. You and I have had this running conversation going back to 2004 to my knowledge. Back then it was about you reading 1500+ RSS feeds. I can’ find the 2004 post, but look st http://ipadventures.com/2005/03/16/making-the-blogroll-hurt-less/ in 2005 and it’s referenced there as well.

    The reading more philosophy sounds nice, but I still argue nobody actually reads and digests that much information. Like a baleen whale, we wind up sucking down krill. It all tastes the same and nothing stands out. When there’s that much noise, the signal-to-noise ratio is skewed.

    I won’t argue that you don’t see things in the noise that stand out. Of course you do. And yes, you’re visible enough that a mention can make a huge difference for a company or person. But it’s still noise. The value, the *listening* to the voices, and the real understanding come at a far deeper level. Following too many people reduces them all to noise. The mass falls toward the lowest common denominator. And while we can unfollow people on Twitter, and many of us do, as humans, there’s a limit to our social circles.

    On the other hand, if you come out vocally saying Twitter isn’t social media for you, because you’ve taken the social relationship out by mass quantity, and you purely use it as a sieve to strain the krill/noise, then you could be right. I’m not sure that’s what the Twitter folks were hoping for, but they’ll take success where they find it (as will we all).

    It’s a topic I’d love to see in a panel discussion with folks who don’t hold with your view alongside you.

    Thanks for posting your thoughts.

  36. Yes I want to learn but I am very hesitant to add people who just run self promotion and spam. I also like blocking said people often. That said I do in general agree

  37. Yes I want to learn but I am very hesitant to add people who just run self promotion and spam. I also like blocking said people often. That said I do in general agree

  38. “The secret to Twitter is how many people are you listening to, not how many people are listening to you.”

    you know, i think you’re absolutely right.

    i’ve met lots of interesting people on twitter. you really do learn more about the world. it’s priceless.

  39. “The secret to Twitter is how many people are you listening to, not how many people are listening to you.”

    you know, i think you’re absolutely right.

    i’ve met lots of interesting people on twitter. you really do learn more about the world. it’s priceless.

  40. I think you all are a bunch of loons. Don’t you have better things to do with your time than exchanging mindless short messages all day? I’ve never touched this stuff, and probably never will, enough things eat at my concentration as it is.

  41. I think you all are a bunch of loons. Don’t you have better things to do with your time than exchanging mindless short messages all day? I’ve never touched this stuff, and probably never will, enough things eat at my concentration as it is.

  42. I have found that increasingly I am looking for people on twitter that have something of value to say… quality posts that open doors to what they are seeing is important, fun, interesting, of the moment – even among friends… and deleting stream of consciousness folks – I think there is real value in twitters who might share the fact that they are having a cigar watching the sunset in Valapariso … but stuck in traffic on 280? not so much.

    So – the blogging > micro blogging analogy thing is valid… perhaps even more so.

    A great talk on this very topic I re-listened to this eve was the excellent on on ambient intimacy from @leisa at future of web apps last fall:

    http://moourl.com/amintimacy

    In summary, it’s nice to have people acknowledge your thought stream by subscribing… but they know what they are getting into when they do – and can easily opt out. I agree the real gold is who you listen to – and adding as many valuable voices as you have time to mine… kind of unbelievable actually. I’m bullish on twitter at the moment, strongly bullish.

  43. I have found that increasingly I am looking for people on twitter that have something of value to say… quality posts that open doors to what they are seeing is important, fun, interesting, of the moment – even among friends… and deleting stream of consciousness folks – I think there is real value in twitters who might share the fact that they are having a cigar watching the sunset in Valapariso … but stuck in traffic on 280? not so much.

    So – the blogging > micro blogging analogy thing is valid… perhaps even more so.

    A great talk on this very topic I re-listened to this eve was the excellent on on ambient intimacy from @leisa at future of web apps last fall:

    http://moourl.com/amintimacy

    In summary, it’s nice to have people acknowledge your thought stream by subscribing… but they know what they are getting into when they do – and can easily opt out. I agree the real gold is who you listen to – and adding as many valuable voices as you have time to mine… kind of unbelievable actually. I’m bullish on twitter at the moment, strongly bullish.

  44. You are right, but… (there is always a but :)) overload. I suffer from information overload, I’m drowning here. Between e-mails, RSS, twitter and friendfeed Who has time to do anything else???

  45. You are right, but… (there is always a but :)) overload. I suffer from information overload, I’m drowning here. Between e-mails, RSS, twitter and friendfeed Who has time to do anything else???

  46. thunk: I can see what you are saying, it does seem like that from the outside, but once you get to using the tool, it is great. I have learnt so much from following the people that I do.

  47. thunk: I can see what you are saying, it does seem like that from the outside, but once you get to using the tool, it is great. I have learnt so much from following the people that I do.

  48. I just started following you on twitter (trying hard not to sound like a stalker), after reading naked conversations, which I loved! After I realized I could, I’ve now found a number of other really amazing thinkers, that share their online streams of consciousness as they’re happening.

    That’s what I reckon is so juicy about twitter, you get a feed of the world that’s been filtered through an amazing mind, @silkcharm being real different from @garyvee.

  49. I just started following you on twitter (trying hard not to sound like a stalker), after reading naked conversations, which I loved! After I realized I could, I’ve now found a number of other really amazing thinkers, that share their online streams of consciousness as they’re happening.

    That’s what I reckon is so juicy about twitter, you get a feed of the world that’s been filtered through an amazing mind, @silkcharm being real different from @garyvee.

  50. Like others, I agree: being followed is fine, but following more is better. Certainly for the likes of you and me (although I feel strangely humbled by the self-comparison, sorry!) I’ve recently started hitting my 250 tweet SMS limit – attending [dev/it pro] events and reading what folks are saying about that event is important to me and helps shape my event experience. That said, I do find myself checking over the “older” stream when I first fire up Twitter – just to learn what the rest of the world (outside of my timezone) has been up to – it can be enlightening, as you well know!

    @thunk – it’s somewhat therapeutic to have a face-2-face conversation, this same happens with Twitter. I know a lot of folks think Twitter is a time-wasting device – used properly, it’s not! Getting a circle of friends and individuals to follow is the key: once you’re “in conversation” with them, ideas flow, conversations that you would not normally have start to open your mind to the possibilities of Twitter (other micro-blogging tools are available).

    So it’s a combination of the right people to follow, and the right “things” (in my case events).

  51. Like others, I agree: being followed is fine, but following more is better. Certainly for the likes of you and me (although I feel strangely humbled by the self-comparison, sorry!) I’ve recently started hitting my 250 tweet SMS limit – attending [dev/it pro] events and reading what folks are saying about that event is important to me and helps shape my event experience. That said, I do find myself checking over the “older” stream when I first fire up Twitter – just to learn what the rest of the world (outside of my timezone) has been up to – it can be enlightening, as you well know!

    @thunk – it’s somewhat therapeutic to have a face-2-face conversation, this same happens with Twitter. I know a lot of folks think Twitter is a time-wasting device – used properly, it’s not! Getting a circle of friends and individuals to follow is the key: once you’re “in conversation” with them, ideas flow, conversations that you would not normally have start to open your mind to the possibilities of Twitter (other micro-blogging tools are available).

    So it’s a combination of the right people to follow, and the right “things” (in my case events).

  52. I agree Robert. I like to think of myself as an active listener. Following is more relevant than Followers if you want to discover. The problem I had just now, was deciding where I should post a response to your post. This blog, Twitter, FF, other? Settled on the blog until we find something that follows the conversation around where ever it may be found.

  53. I agree Robert. I like to think of myself as an active listener. Following is more relevant than Followers if you want to discover. The problem I had just now, was deciding where I should post a response to your post. This blog, Twitter, FF, other? Settled on the blog until we find something that follows the conversation around where ever it may be found.

  54. I’m a convert (Twittered a couple days ago): http://twitter.com/techguy/statuses/775284905

    What do you think of the concept of twitter “groups”? Essentially a way to filter your twitter friends in to groups of people from certain topic areas/relationships/etc.

    Close friends I want to read all their twitters. Tech people and VC people may be another group that I read regularly as needed. Sure I could create two accounts, but that’s no fun to manage.

  55. I’m a convert (Twittered a couple days ago): http://twitter.com/techguy/statuses/775284905

    What do you think of the concept of twitter “groups”? Essentially a way to filter your twitter friends in to groups of people from certain topic areas/relationships/etc.

    Close friends I want to read all their twitters. Tech people and VC people may be another group that I read regularly as needed. Sure I could create two accounts, but that’s no fun to manage.

  56. just finished writing a post on twitter :)

    to me, the conversation is important. i feel most comfortable having a good balance of followers and follwing-ers (followees?)

    a few people seem to follow me for reasons that are utterly unclear to me or suspiciously look like spam. not interested in adding their spam or silence to my day; that’s why i have a few more followers than followees.

    overall it works well: every day i marvel and smile at my twitter circle.

  57. just finished writing a post on twitter :)

    to me, the conversation is important. i feel most comfortable having a good balance of followers and follwing-ers (followees?)

    a few people seem to follow me for reasons that are utterly unclear to me or suspiciously look like spam. not interested in adding their spam or silence to my day; that’s why i have a few more followers than followees.

    overall it works well: every day i marvel and smile at my twitter circle.

  58. to Lionel Menchaca: It’s not only important to follow people who think alike. In order for learning to be successful, it’s also important to often follow people with whom you do not share interests or similar htoughts. There should be enough of a difference that your thoughts are stimulated to go in different directions than they would typically do.

  59. to Lionel Menchaca: It’s not only important to follow people who think alike. In order for learning to be successful, it’s also important to often follow people with whom you do not share interests or similar htoughts. There should be enough of a difference that your thoughts are stimulated to go in different directions than they would typically do.

  60. Twitter is the new serious phenomenon.All-sufficient one.Informational epicentre.Following & followers are both useful.A single whole.

  61. Twitter is the new serious phenomenon.All-sufficient one.Informational epicentre.Following & followers are both useful.A single whole.

  62. twitter would not be the same without twitterfox. someone said the other day that friendfeed is the new twitter. i say twitterfox is the new twitter. this is an app that’s actually better than the tool it’s built for.

  63. twitter would not be the same without twitterfox. someone said the other day that friendfeed is the new twitter. i say twitterfox is the new twitter. this is an app that’s actually better than the tool it’s built for.

  64. Hi, nice seeing you at Gary’s.
    I have a question : how can you decently manage to read 15k buddy tweets ? I approximated 1 tweet every 5s If you happen to read my comment, you must have missed nearly 2…
    if you answer to it, you’ll miss another 10.
    New idea for Oakley : to design twitter roll for sunglasses, and hire U as a beta-tester ;-)

  65. Hi, nice seeing you at Gary’s.
    I have a question : how can you decently manage to read 15k buddy tweets ? I approximated 1 tweet every 5s If you happen to read my comment, you must have missed nearly 2…
    if you answer to it, you’ll miss another 10.
    New idea for Oakley : to design twitter roll for sunglasses, and hire U as a beta-tester ;-)

  66. I think you’re spot-on with your post here. I’ve only signed up to a handful of people who I feel add to any debate. (You for one). There are a couple of exceptions for pure novelty value.

    I check everyone who follows me, but hardly ever follow in return unless they meet the criteria I’ve set. I don’t check to se who ‘unfollows’ as a result, but as my figures stay pretty constant that’s OK.

    I’m a lazy ‘Twitterer’. I tend to soak up all the info like a sponge, but post seldom. My first contact ages ago was Brad Fallon, he posts not too often, but always has great content. the same with Joel Comm. we can all learn great stuff by being choosy about who we follow, otherwise we just get deluged with nonsense.

    Always good to read ‘some’ of the ‘Schobie-posts’.

    Pete.

  67. I think you’re spot-on with your post here. I’ve only signed up to a handful of people who I feel add to any debate. (You for one). There are a couple of exceptions for pure novelty value.

    I check everyone who follows me, but hardly ever follow in return unless they meet the criteria I’ve set. I don’t check to se who ‘unfollows’ as a result, but as my figures stay pretty constant that’s OK.

    I’m a lazy ‘Twitterer’. I tend to soak up all the info like a sponge, but post seldom. My first contact ages ago was Brad Fallon, he posts not too often, but always has great content. the same with Joel Comm. we can all learn great stuff by being choosy about who we follow, otherwise we just get deluged with nonsense.

    Always good to read ‘some’ of the ‘Schobie-posts’.

    Pete.

  68. I’ve definitely reached a limit with my following numbers, it currently varies between 350-400. I use it more to listen to people I know with new voices being tried and they stay depending on what they say. I just can’t cope with more as I miss too much.

    As for notifications, it’s normally restricted to those in the same place as me, those I directly interact with. If notifications are going to the phone, then it gets cut more, with the limits on texts here.

  69. I’ve definitely reached a limit with my following numbers, it currently varies between 350-400. I use it more to listen to people I know with new voices being tried and they stay depending on what they say. I just can’t cope with more as I miss too much.

    As for notifications, it’s normally restricted to those in the same place as me, those I directly interact with. If notifications are going to the phone, then it gets cut more, with the limits on texts here.

  70. While I agree with this in theory, I have a hard enough time keeping up with the people I already follow. If I followed anywhere near the amount of people you or Calacanis follow, there is no way I could even attempt to read everyone’s tweets, much less try and respond to them.

  71. Communication has long been a two way thing, anything less suggests those that are speaking are actually preaching. I’d go to Church if I wanted that.

    Followers v. Following is awkward with Twitter because Twitter is essentially broadcast to all. My experience of social networking is that I belong to several groups and while I would like to use twitter to converse more, conversation in one group is not the same as conversation in another.

    I would like to see Twitter develop so as it’s possible to have several groups on the one account. I think this would enable conversation.

  72. Communication has long been a two way thing, anything less suggests those that are speaking are actually preaching. I’d go to Church if I wanted that.

    Followers v. Following is awkward with Twitter because Twitter is essentially broadcast to all. My experience of social networking is that I belong to several groups and while I would like to use twitter to converse more, conversation in one group is not the same as conversation in another.

    I would like to see Twitter develop so as it’s possible to have several groups on the one account. I think this would enable conversation.

  73. While I agree with this in theory, I have a hard enough time keeping up with the people I already follow. If I followed anywhere near the amount of people you or Calacanis follow, there is no way I could even attempt to read everyone’s tweets, much less try and respond to them.

  74. It is possible to spam twitter… but it is not down to numbers, it is down to approach. If you follow people for no better reason that to follow anyone then you spam when you tweet. If you accept followers for no better reason than to have followers then you spam when you tweet. There has to be a reason why you follow someone, and why you allow someone to follow you. Both instances require conscious thought.

  75. It is possible to spam twitter… but it is not down to numbers, it is down to approach. If you follow people for no better reason that to follow anyone then you spam when you tweet. If you accept followers for no better reason than to have followers then you spam when you tweet. There has to be a reason why you follow someone, and why you allow someone to follow you. Both instances require conscious thought.

  76. Its all about balance – keeping followers and followed in roughly equal balance IMHO. To many followers means you are into micro fame, guru mode.

    For me twittering is reinforcing my contact with a , dispersed, family and circle of friends.

    What destroys twitter is when one person seeks to monopolise my attention stream by being to profligate.

    This is why I canceled my subscription to yours and Loic’s stream but retained my sub to Fred Wilson. Next to go are Gaping Void and Calacanis

  77. Its all about balance – keeping followers and followed in roughly equal balance IMHO. To many followers means you are into micro fame, guru mode.

    For me twittering is reinforcing my contact with a , dispersed, family and circle of friends.

    What destroys twitter is when one person seeks to monopolise my attention stream by being to profligate.

    This is why I canceled my subscription to yours and Loic’s stream but retained my sub to Fred Wilson. Next to go are Gaping Void and Calacanis

  78. I just discovered the “track” feature and I think a mix between that and following people could be good. I tracked the earthquake in England a few days ago and it was really fascinating because so many people were talking about the same topic. Following people I like is another way to increase the signal vs noise ratio, but people don’t talk 100% about a certain topic, sometimes they just have to mention their cat. At the same time, if I track a keyword and somebody doesn’t use that exact keyword I miss it..

    Having followers is cool because you can start an instant active conversation on a topic, but following is cool because you discover stuff passively.

    I’m a MAYBE for now, but hopefully I figure it out.

  79. I just discovered the “track” feature and I think a mix between that and following people could be good. I tracked the earthquake in England a few days ago and it was really fascinating because so many people were talking about the same topic. Following people I like is another way to increase the signal vs noise ratio, but people don’t talk 100% about a certain topic, sometimes they just have to mention their cat. At the same time, if I track a keyword and somebody doesn’t use that exact keyword I miss it..

    Having followers is cool because you can start an instant active conversation on a topic, but following is cool because you discover stuff passively.

    I’m a MAYBE for now, but hopefully I figure it out.

  80. The real secret of Twitter is that you can play the game any way you like it.

    If Scoble gets value out of following thousands of people, that’s hunky dory. If others find diminishing returns when they follow more than 50 or 300, that’s just as valid. If some want to treat it as an endless audition and actively manage and prune their list, more power to them.

    I’m coming up on 400, and for me, it’s getting a bit much.

  81. two things: I really enjoy following people. I have nothing of importance to say and others are so much more informative and interesting them I.

    Secondly, a previous poster mentioned the lack of need for Yahoo when you have the twitter network. Yahoo? People still turn to that for information? What is this 1998?

  82. two things: I really enjoy following people. I have nothing of importance to say and others are so much more informative and interesting them I.

    Secondly, a previous poster mentioned the lack of need for Yahoo when you have the twitter network. Yahoo? People still turn to that for information? What is this 1998?

  83. The real secret of Twitter is that you can play the game any way you like it.

    If Scoble gets value out of following thousands of people, that’s hunky dory. If others find diminishing returns when they follow more than 50 or 300, that’s just as valid. If some want to treat it as an endless audition and actively manage and prune their list, more power to them.

    I’m coming up on 400, and for me, it’s getting a bit much.

  84. I would agree but at no point do I want to be following 3,000 people. That sort of figure is a lie, you are not following them at all… you are catching the occasional bounce, the odd snippet and the lightest whisper of the presence in the obscene data flow that is your twitter. Does lucky attention focus make you a good listener? I doubt it, it just means you chose to listen at a good time… you may have missed a hundred tweets of equal or superior value to you.

    If there was a way to level out your following it could work. You could ‘follow’ 3,000 or more and have an ear to the ground with a second (layered)stage of following to those you truly keep an eye out for by ‘focusing’ on them. So you can follow, then focus.

    Am I alone in thinking this makes a certain sense?

  85. I would agree but at no point do I want to be following 3,000 people. That sort of figure is a lie, you are not following them at all… you are catching the occasional bounce, the odd snippet and the lightest whisper of the presence in the obscene data flow that is your twitter. Does lucky attention focus make you a good listener? I doubt it, it just means you chose to listen at a good time… you may have missed a hundred tweets of equal or superior value to you.

    If there was a way to level out your following it could work. You could ‘follow’ 3,000 or more and have an ear to the ground with a second (layered)stage of following to those you truly keep an eye out for by ‘focusing’ on them. So you can follow, then focus.

    Am I alone in thinking this makes a certain sense?

  86. You know, I’d really like to see you writing about must-read people on Twitter. I know there are great bloggers, so there must be great twitterers too, people that add a lot of value to the community.

  87. You know, I’d really like to see you writing about must-read people on Twitter. I know there are great bloggers, so there must be great twitterers too, people that add a lot of value to the community.

  88. Well said. However, often I find myself going back through pages to see what have I missed while I was away from Twitter and with too many people this can be a while back, plus Twitter only keeps last 10 pages of history anyway. I do this as I find interesting to see what people wrote about, what they said and of course what they are doing. :)

  89. Well said. However, often I find myself going back through pages to see what have I missed while I was away from Twitter and with too many people this can be a while back, plus Twitter only keeps last 10 pages of history anyway. I do this as I find interesting to see what people wrote about, what they said and of course what they are doing. :)

  90. Listening is a key life skill in general so it makes sense to apply this to twittering. However, listening to too many people can become background noise, especially if they aren’t saying anything or what they are saying is foolish (I sound like Dvorak)…listen intently to a wise few. http://tinyurl.com/2yjzep

  91. Agree with your thoughts on listening. How often does Calacanis have something useful to say? Occasionally he does and he can be insightful, but most of it is shameless self-promotion and eventually we will just get bored or hook onto the next interesting fad/personality.

    In terms of the Arrington spam issue – Arrington is right, just tune out, its your choice, you dont have to tune in. However, and this might have been the persons issue with Mike, some people just tweet too much and they clutter the really useful things they have to say. Again, in the end you will tune out.

  92. Agree with your thoughts on listening. How often does Calacanis have something useful to say? Occasionally he does and he can be insightful, but most of it is shameless self-promotion and eventually we will just get bored or hook onto the next interesting fad/personality.

    In terms of the Arrington spam issue – Arrington is right, just tune out, its your choice, you dont have to tune in. However, and this might have been the persons issue with Mike, some people just tweet too much and they clutter the really useful things they have to say. Again, in the end you will tune out.

  93. Listening is a key life skill in general so it makes sense to apply this to twittering. However, listening to too many people can become background noise, especially if they aren’t saying anything or what they are saying is foolish (I sound like Dvorak)…listen intently to a wise few. http://tinyurl.com/2yjzep

  94. I like what you’ve said about twitter, it validates my use of it. I like to see what my friends, colleges, and sometimes random people are doing/saying/thinking. Its gives me a different view into someone’s mind and I learn from it.

    Only follow the people you’re interested in.

  95. I like what you’ve said about twitter, it validates my use of it. I like to see what my friends, colleges, and sometimes random people are doing/saying/thinking. Its gives me a different view into someone’s mind and I learn from it.

    Only follow the people you’re interested in.

  96. I’ve pruned the list of folks I’m following a couple of times, and I’ve had to be careful about the number of people I follow. Some people seem to simply be out to collect as many “friends” as they can, and the signal-to-noise ratio gets way out of whack. At least that’s my experience. There’s a fine line between being interesting and producing a stream of self-serving twaddle. I follow people (including you, Robert) because they’re interesting.

  97. I’ve pruned the list of folks I’m following a couple of times, and I’ve had to be careful about the number of people I follow. Some people seem to simply be out to collect as many “friends” as they can, and the signal-to-noise ratio gets way out of whack. At least that’s my experience. There’s a fine line between being interesting and producing a stream of self-serving twaddle. I follow people (including you, Robert) because they’re interesting.

  98. @scobleizer – I’ve loved the idea of following a tidal wave of people to see the ebb and flow of trends and Internet thought processes. The problem thus far, and reason for keeping a maintainable list, is that I want to receive tweets on the iPhone.

    I’m going to be adding a ton of people to my main account soon and splitting off a second account with SMS notifications for the iPhone. 200+ people on Twitter all sending SMS was a bit nuts.

  99. @scobleizer – I’ve loved the idea of following a tidal wave of people to see the ebb and flow of trends and Internet thought processes. The problem thus far, and reason for keeping a maintainable list, is that I want to receive tweets on the iPhone.

    I’m going to be adding a ton of people to my main account soon and splitting off a second account with SMS notifications for the iPhone. 200+ people on Twitter all sending SMS was a bit nuts.

  100. Excellent points made. I am only a recent sign up/convert, only because I really kept avoiding Twitter like the plague. I totally misunderstood this tool and definitely misunderstand the power. I follow only a few select people, but I did it to learn. You get access to sites, information, etc. faster than any other medium. Now I only wish I had signed up last year when I learned about it.

    Anyone have any advice on how to find more interesting people to follow? Stumbling into them is great, and word of mouth, but are there any other ways to find those who tweet what you are interested in?

    Keep up the great work Scoble.

  101. Excellent points made. I am only a recent sign up/convert, only because I really kept avoiding Twitter like the plague. I totally misunderstood this tool and definitely misunderstand the power. I follow only a few select people, but I did it to learn. You get access to sites, information, etc. faster than any other medium. Now I only wish I had signed up last year when I learned about it.

    Anyone have any advice on how to find more interesting people to follow? Stumbling into them is great, and word of mouth, but are there any other ways to find those who tweet what you are interested in?

    Keep up the great work Scoble.

  102. Well said, Robert. Becoming a better listener is one of my constant goals. I’d never thought of that concept on Twitter. ‘Noise reduction’ is important, but new and interesting Twitters are always on my radar. I guess ‘A listers’ as Leo calls them, are not really required for a full Twitter experience.

    Cheers, a

  103. Well said, Robert. Becoming a better listener is one of my constant goals. I’d never thought of that concept on Twitter. ‘Noise reduction’ is important, but new and interesting Twitters are always on my radar. I guess ‘A listers’ as Leo calls them, are not really required for a full Twitter experience.

    Cheers, a

  104. Scoble you are the man!
    It is very true that being interested in others makes you more interesting and hopefully more compassionate, tolerant and dare I say more intelligent. We all have a short blip on this planet and even if one is a Albert Einstein, you will only absorb a small percentage of all the knowledge the world has to offer. Communication is about sharing knowledge, relationships are about growth. It hard to grow efficiently when one isn’t engaging with people and the world at large.

  105. Scoble you are the man!
    It is very true that being interested in others makes you more interesting and hopefully more compassionate, tolerant and dare I say more intelligent. We all have a short blip on this planet and even if one is a Albert Einstein, you will only absorb a small percentage of all the knowledge the world has to offer. Communication is about sharing knowledge, relationships are about growth. It hard to grow efficiently when one isn’t engaging with people and the world at large.

  106. Spot on with the post. Personally, I’ve risen and peaked quickly on my impression of Twitter. Perhaps I have social networking ADD. Vehemently opposed it days leading to SXSWi – joined b/c of SXSWi – active for about one week – now, enjoying it as an observer and reader. As a newbie, twitter-addiction is a fine line to tread.

  107. Spot on with the post. Personally, I’ve risen and peaked quickly on my impression of Twitter. Perhaps I have social networking ADD. Vehemently opposed it days leading to SXSWi – joined b/c of SXSWi – active for about one week – now, enjoying it as an observer and reader. As a newbie, twitter-addiction is a fine line to tread.

  108. Well, I am Twitter Newbie…so my opinion may not count for much. That being said, over the past 72 hours I have read some REALLY great articles suggested by Twits, tried to find a sitter to go to Web 2.0 & Wine and have successfully peeked into the minds of industry leaders in my field.

    Definitely worth be a follower!!!

  109. Well, I am Twitter Newbie…so my opinion may not count for much. That being said, over the past 72 hours I have read some REALLY great articles suggested by Twits, tried to find a sitter to go to Web 2.0 & Wine and have successfully peeked into the minds of industry leaders in my field.

    Definitely worth be a follower!!!

  110. I think it is difficult to follow more than 100+ people on Twitter. There are currently no good ways to organize the incoming flow of information.

  111. I think it is difficult to follow more than 100+ people on Twitter. There are currently no good ways to organize the incoming flow of information.

  112. Dan: it’s not hard to listen to 15,000. Just get Google Talk and watch the posts roll over your screen. Now, keep in mind, I only do that for a couple of hours a day. I use the “replies” tab to see people who talked to me. I use various Twitter search engines to follow people who are talking about something specific. I use FriendFeed to see a smattering of other things that happen throughout the day (best posts get commented on, which brings them to the top).

  113. Dan: it’s not hard to listen to 15,000. Just get Google Talk and watch the posts roll over your screen. Now, keep in mind, I only do that for a couple of hours a day. I use the “replies” tab to see people who talked to me. I use various Twitter search engines to follow people who are talking about something specific. I use FriendFeed to see a smattering of other things that happen throughout the day (best posts get commented on, which brings them to the top).

  114. I’m still a little dazed and confused by Twitter, but recognized how revolutionary it is and am still trying to understand how I can use it.

  115. I’m still a little dazed and confused by Twitter, but recognized how revolutionary it is and am still trying to understand how I can use it.

  116. absolutely agree! there’s new connections to be made through just a few clicks and a follow here and there along with a few @s – i’ve learned about people in the last few weeks through twitter than i would in months any other causual communication tool – sometimes i wish, however, that we could group/cluster those we follow.. and flag and highlight and cross group.. so we can follow with different focuses if we’d like.

    but then i think the spontaneity of it all would be diluted – which is part of the beauty of twitter.

    I love twitter!

  117. absolutely agree! there’s new connections to be made through just a few clicks and a follow here and there along with a few @s – i’ve learned about people in the last few weeks through twitter than i would in months any other causual communication tool – sometimes i wish, however, that we could group/cluster those we follow.. and flag and highlight and cross group.. so we can follow with different focuses if we’d like.

    but then i think the spontaneity of it all would be diluted – which is part of the beauty of twitter.

    I love twitter!

  118. I so agree! I feel snubbed when the WebCelebs of Twitterverse ask us all to follow them, but then don’t return the favor. WTF? It’s like saying that what I have to say doesn’t matter to you and that I’m not important enough for you to return the connection, but I am important enough for you to ask me to follow you so your numbers get big. I may be just a number to the gov’t but I am a person, and what flows from my lips may just surprise you!

  119. I so agree! I feel snubbed when the WebCelebs of Twitterverse ask us all to follow them, but then don’t return the favor. WTF? It’s like saying that what I have to say doesn’t matter to you and that I’m not important enough for you to return the connection, but I am important enough for you to ask me to follow you so your numbers get big. I may be just a number to the gov’t but I am a person, and what flows from my lips may just surprise you!

  120. Scoble,

    Do you honestly think that listening to lots of twitter streams makes you smarter? Really?

    I am so sick of this stuff that it makes my blood boil. Why is it that the whole social media thing is designed around what’s happening NOW when what I really want to know is what MATTERS.

    Following friends doesn’t make you smarter. I claim it makes you dumber as you spend less time understanding what matters, and more time understanding who is tying their laces!!

  121. Scoble,

    Do you honestly think that listening to lots of twitter streams makes you smarter? Really?

    I am so sick of this stuff that it makes my blood boil. Why is it that the whole social media thing is designed around what’s happening NOW when what I really want to know is what MATTERS.

    Following friends doesn’t make you smarter. I claim it makes you dumber as you spend less time understanding what matters, and more time understanding who is tying their laces!!

  122. From this post:
    “At some point I thought it was important to get lots of followers. But lately I’ve been telling people that the secret to Twitter isn’t how many followers you have, but how many people you are following.”
    Exactly! Not enough people understand this. Scoble is a very bright individual.

  123. From this post:
    “At some point I thought it was important to get lots of followers. But lately I’ve been telling people that the secret to Twitter isn’t how many followers you have, but how many people you are following.”
    Exactly! Not enough people understand this. Scoble is a very bright individual.

  124. Re:
    “Dan: it’s not hard to listen to 15,000. Just get Google Talk and watch the posts roll over your screen. Now, keep in mind, I only do that for a couple of hours a day. I use the “replies” tab to see people who talked to me. I use various Twitter search engines to follow people who are talking about something specific. I use FriendFeed to see a smattering of other things that happen throughout the day (best posts get commented on, which brings them to the top).

    Comment by Robert Scoble — March 24, 2008 @ 7:37 am”
    Robert, if you offered a class in regard to maximizing the use of Twitter and other social networks, think about how many people would love to take that? (anyone that wants to get ahead and learn from the best). This blog, Scobleizer) is an informal class (dialogue I know) anyway.

  125. Re:
    “Dan: it’s not hard to listen to 15,000. Just get Google Talk and watch the posts roll over your screen. Now, keep in mind, I only do that for a couple of hours a day. I use the “replies” tab to see people who talked to me. I use various Twitter search engines to follow people who are talking about something specific. I use FriendFeed to see a smattering of other things that happen throughout the day (best posts get commented on, which brings them to the top).

    Comment by Robert Scoble — March 24, 2008 @ 7:37 am”
    Robert, if you offered a class in regard to maximizing the use of Twitter and other social networks, think about how many people would love to take that? (anyone that wants to get ahead and learn from the best). This blog, Scobleizer) is an informal class (dialogue I know) anyway.

  126. Robert,
    I can’t disagree with you more. Why not “follow everyone” then? I don’t think you following that many people is “authentic.” You don’t read their tweets… how can you even claim to be following them.

    It’s a giant river of chatter… you look for the big fish (like Calacanis to borrow your example) and ignore the little fish. I don’t follow you because although I’ve met you in person and think you are quality guy, the relationship with you on Twitter is a waste of attention because your attention is too distracted.

    P.S. I don’t think you even believe this position you’re taking and are only doing it to get more comments to your blog.

  127. Robert,
    I can’t disagree with you more. Why not “follow everyone” then? I don’t think you following that many people is “authentic.” You don’t read their tweets… how can you even claim to be following them.

    It’s a giant river of chatter… you look for the big fish (like Calacanis to borrow your example) and ignore the little fish. I don’t follow you because although I’ve met you in person and think you are quality guy, the relationship with you on Twitter is a waste of attention because your attention is too distracted.

    P.S. I don’t think you even believe this position you’re taking and are only doing it to get more comments to your blog.

  128. Let’s just hope that Twitter will not kill our language. I am sorry to say it, but that is the worst written post of you in a long time. I bet you hardly spent any time on it, as the wording of the post reminds me of pre-high school-kind of argumentation. Is Twitter affecting our language?

  129. Let’s just hope that Twitter will not kill our language. I am sorry to say it, but that is the worst written post of you in a long time. I bet you hardly spent any time on it, as the wording of the post reminds me of pre-high school-kind of argumentation. Is Twitter affecting our language?

  130. Missing something here Robert – *most* people’s jobs do not give them the time in the day to spend two hours watching a feed of anything. This, in my opinion, is what will forever limit the potential of Twitter. Most of us are barely keeping up with email (hence Arrington’s post today) and the news feeds we already read, the notion of trying to track yet another ‘conversation’ is just out of reach for too many people.

    And by the way, I’m not saying you aren’t a busy guy – I know you are.

  131. Missing something here Robert – *most* people’s jobs do not give them the time in the day to spend two hours watching a feed of anything. This, in my opinion, is what will forever limit the potential of Twitter. Most of us are barely keeping up with email (hence Arrington’s post today) and the news feeds we already read, the notion of trying to track yet another ‘conversation’ is just out of reach for too many people.

    And by the way, I’m not saying you aren’t a busy guy – I know you are.

  132. Hey Robert – not sure if you’ll read all the way down here, but it’s down to comment 88, and i don’t see many really disagreeing with your main points. That ends here. :-p

    You speak of proper usage of Twitter like there’s a right way and a wrong way to use it. You subscribe to ten times the newsfeeds I do, Robert. That means you *must* have seen all the same quality news posts I’ve seen describing twenty or thirty ways to use Twitter in an effort to increase productivity, knowlege or communication.

    That said, how can you say that there’s only one way to use twitter to make you smarter? This isn’t a continuum.

    Listen, I’m a guy who loves absolute truth and a guy who hates moral relativism, so it pains me to say this, but there aren’t very many *wrong* ways to use Twitter.

  133. Hey Robert – not sure if you’ll read all the way down here, but it’s down to comment 88, and i don’t see many really disagreeing with your main points. That ends here. :-p

    You speak of proper usage of Twitter like there’s a right way and a wrong way to use it. You subscribe to ten times the newsfeeds I do, Robert. That means you *must* have seen all the same quality news posts I’ve seen describing twenty or thirty ways to use Twitter in an effort to increase productivity, knowlege or communication.

    That said, how can you say that there’s only one way to use twitter to make you smarter? This isn’t a continuum.

    Listen, I’m a guy who loves absolute truth and a guy who hates moral relativism, so it pains me to say this, but there aren’t very many *wrong* ways to use Twitter.

  134. More is not better, enough is. Follow enough to assure that you are not trapped in group think. Follow enough to challenge your perceptions. Follow others who adhere to this precept and your ‘following’ will be magnified. Follow few enough that you have some time to have a life.

    Live long, live well.

  135. More is not better, enough is. Follow enough to assure that you are not trapped in group think. Follow enough to challenge your perceptions. Follow others who adhere to this precept and your ‘following’ will be magnified. Follow few enough that you have some time to have a life.

    Live long, live well.

  136. I think you are spot on with this one. The only reason I even got on twitter was to follow a few of my friends. I think that following is much more important as opposed to being followed. Knowledge is power so more knowledge = good.

  137. I think you are spot on with this one. The only reason I even got on twitter was to follow a few of my friends. I think that following is much more important as opposed to being followed. Knowledge is power so more knowledge = good.

  138. I don’t get it. I’m sure there are studies that prove that people capture less after a certain threshold of both quantity and time. And I’m sure that Twitter is only relevant to a subset of people, e.g. journalists like yourself or marketeers like Calicanis, who I guess have the 2-hours/day to dedicate to this. So why are you trying to convince us that Twitter is good for everyone? Where is the science behind it, the objectivity?

    Where is the study that proves that it is better for me to follow 10,000 people, when I already lose track after 30? And who am *I* supposed to be? John Smith from down the street, or some kind of *specific* professional whose work revolves around Twitter? And if it’s meant to be someone specific, then qualify that.

    I find it much more interesting to hear about interviews with Russian entrepreneurs or other visionaries, then a glamourised chat-program. But that’s probably because I’m me.

  139. I don’t get it. I’m sure there are studies that prove that people capture less after a certain threshold of both quantity and time. And I’m sure that Twitter is only relevant to a subset of people, e.g. journalists like yourself or marketeers like Calicanis, who I guess have the 2-hours/day to dedicate to this. So why are you trying to convince us that Twitter is good for everyone? Where is the science behind it, the objectivity?

    Where is the study that proves that it is better for me to follow 10,000 people, when I already lose track after 30? And who am *I* supposed to be? John Smith from down the street, or some kind of *specific* professional whose work revolves around Twitter? And if it’s meant to be someone specific, then qualify that.

    I find it much more interesting to hear about interviews with Russian entrepreneurs or other visionaries, then a glamourised chat-program. But that’s probably because I’m me.

  140. Well, at least the self-absorbed tweeters are busy talking to each other, leaving the Valley streets free of the usual daily sociopath fare.

    Good for something after all.

  141. Well, at least the self-absorbed tweeters are busy talking to each other, leaving the Valley streets free of the usual daily sociopath fare.

    Good for something after all.

  142. Robert, I read this early in the morning and didn’t have enough time to comment then. This is the best post I have ever read. It’s all about community.

    Who follows the most people on twitter?

  143. Robert, I read this early in the morning and didn’t have enough time to comment then. This is the best post I have ever read. It’s all about community.

    Who follows the most people on twitter?

  144. It’s hard to explain how much your perspective of Twitter changes when you go from being followed by 80 people to 8,000. The most fascinating thing about Twitter is that in both cases, there is great value in it as a communication platform. I have met dozens of interesting people around the country solely because I follow a lot of people on Twitter. Of course, that’s because I use Twitter to connect with new people, rather than as a method of grasping for cyber attention.

  145. It’s hard to explain how much your perspective of Twitter changes when you go from being followed by 80 people to 8,000. The most fascinating thing about Twitter is that in both cases, there is great value in it as a communication platform. I have met dozens of interesting people around the country solely because I follow a lot of people on Twitter. Of course, that’s because I use Twitter to connect with new people, rather than as a method of grasping for cyber attention.

  146. @Scobleizer – I love your message! To that end, I try and follow 3-5 new people today. In fact just the other day, I asked Twitter “whom should I be following that I’m not already?” The funniest response I got back was to follow @tweetjeebus.

    It is nice to get followed back so you can actually have a conversation with folks but you’re right, at the end of the day you can learn a TON from just listening.

    Best @astrout

  147. @Scobleizer – I love your message! To that end, I try and follow 3-5 new people today. In fact just the other day, I asked Twitter “whom should I be following that I’m not already?” The funniest response I got back was to follow @tweetjeebus.

    It is nice to get followed back so you can actually have a conversation with folks but you’re right, at the end of the day you can learn a TON from just listening.

    Best @astrout

  148. Scoble – What if most of the Twitters you are following are just one-sided attempts at self-broadcasting one’s own coolness to the world? Is that really learning a lot about someone and their passions, intellectual curiosity and discoveries? Following so many: “i’m at the coolest party ev-er!” and “look at what i’m doing! look how cool it is!!” tweets?
    I am experimenting with Twitter and I wonder if there is real value in the communications exchanged. Maybe what you write is true in the case of following tweets that are deeper than the shallow kinds I just described, but if so I cannot find them. Or else, it’s a steep curve to get to meaningful content for a n00b.

  149. Scoble – What if most of the Twitters you are following are just one-sided attempts at self-broadcasting one’s own coolness to the world? Is that really learning a lot about someone and their passions, intellectual curiosity and discoveries? Following so many: “i’m at the coolest party ev-er!” and “look at what i’m doing! look how cool it is!!” tweets?
    I am experimenting with Twitter and I wonder if there is real value in the communications exchanged. Maybe what you write is true in the case of following tweets that are deeper than the shallow kinds I just described, but if so I cannot find them. Or else, it’s a steep curve to get to meaningful content for a n00b.

  150. Nice post, Mr. Scoble — a very street savvy perspective and one that likely benefits you – my simple math on 10 friends I just tweeted – 4 have the excat same followers/followed (reciprocity at play?), 4 have more followers and 2 follow more —not too sure if everybody is on your page, but it would appear like about half subscribe to your spray gun policy. cheers

  151. Nice post, Mr. Scoble — a very street savvy perspective and one that likely benefits you – my simple math on 10 friends I just tweeted – 4 have the excat same followers/followed (reciprocity at play?), 4 have more followers and 2 follow more —not too sure if everybody is on your page, but it would appear like about half subscribe to your spray gun policy. cheers

  152. links for 2008-03-25

    Tag Cloud – The Daily Mo
    (tags: icommented media budgets)

    Basic Thinking Blog | Data Portability: Was ist mit Interconnectivity?
    (tags: data portability social networks weblogs trackbacks)

    What is Data Portability? — mrtopf.de

  153. I don’t mean to disappoint anyone, but I’m not such a big fan of Twiteter. I am a good listner, but it’s hard for me to follow it, dunno why.

    However, I found a funny use for it: a month ago, I started useing it to write short stories. It is quite challenging to write with 140 characters, and since then I’ve been using it a lot more.

    It’s in Portuguese (I’m considering creating one in English), but if you wanna check out http://www.twitter.com/silentinsanity .

  154. I don’t mean to disappoint anyone, but I’m not such a big fan of Twiteter. I am a good listner, but it’s hard for me to follow it, dunno why.

    However, I found a funny use for it: a month ago, I started useing it to write short stories. It is quite challenging to write with 140 characters, and since then I’ve been using it a lot more.

    It’s in Portuguese (I’m considering creating one in English), but if you wanna check out http://www.twitter.com/silentinsanity .

  155. I think it’s natural to have more followers than people you follow because I find that what happens is that every day, a half dozen or so people might follow me, but 4 or 5 of them will have just started and put NOTHING in their tweets, or they have a totally boring page. I wish there was a way to just keep them “pending” in a holding pen (other than email) to see if they get more interesting. So many people on these things just want to gawk while others entertain them, so they have nothing to say or are even silent. Why follow them, then?

    I think ZiggyFigaro’s Ninja Twitter tip: don’t follow people until you have some sayings on your own Twitter — is a key to getting more people to follow you.

    I’d love to follow more interesting people, but where are they? I’d have to sit online and watch the public firehose and that takes time. So I find people by mining Scoble’s friends periodically, and also using tweetscan.com to see the people who mentioned my name whom I didn’t even know.

  156. I think it’s natural to have more followers than people you follow because I find that what happens is that every day, a half dozen or so people might follow me, but 4 or 5 of them will have just started and put NOTHING in their tweets, or they have a totally boring page. I wish there was a way to just keep them “pending” in a holding pen (other than email) to see if they get more interesting. So many people on these things just want to gawk while others entertain them, so they have nothing to say or are even silent. Why follow them, then?

    I think ZiggyFigaro’s Ninja Twitter tip: don’t follow people until you have some sayings on your own Twitter — is a key to getting more people to follow you.

    I’d love to follow more interesting people, but where are they? I’d have to sit online and watch the public firehose and that takes time. So I find people by mining Scoble’s friends periodically, and also using tweetscan.com to see the people who mentioned my name whom I didn’t even know.

  157. Right on Robert. When I was about 10 years old, my grandmother told me “you learn a lot more from listening than you do from talking.” It’s stuck with me and definitely applies to Twitter. Nice post!

    Yankee wisdom never goes out of style.

  158. Right on Robert. When I was about 10 years old, my grandmother told me “you learn a lot more from listening than you do from talking.” It’s stuck with me and definitely applies to Twitter. Nice post!

    Yankee wisdom never goes out of style.

    @jstorerj on Twitter

  159. Right on Robert. When I was about 10 years old, my grandmother told me “you learn a lot more from listening than you do from talking.” It’s stuck with me and definitely applies to Twitter. Nice post!

    Yankee wisdom never goes out of style.

  160. Right on Robert. When I was about 10 years old, my grandmother told me “you learn a lot more from listening than you do from talking.” It’s stuck with me and definitely applies to Twitter. Nice post!

    Yankee wisdom never goes out of style.

    @jstorerj on Twitter

  161. I think this is halfway right. It is important to follow lots of people, but it’s not the only thing that matters. I have been followed by many accounts that are following 6000+ people, but are clearly just doing it to gain volume. I think that the number of people you are having real conversations with is what matters. Following people via a script that follows as many IDs as it can follow isn’t really participating in anything.

  162. I think this is halfway right. It is important to follow lots of people, but it’s not the only thing that matters. I have been followed by many accounts that are following 6000+ people, but are clearly just doing it to gain volume. I think that the number of people you are having real conversations with is what matters. Following people via a script that follows as many IDs as it can follow isn’t really participating in anything.

  163. Questions for the tweets – what do you do if/when you go “off twitter” and come back on? do you read past tweets? do you click on your favorite follow/er? do you begin at that moment? what percentage of the tweets you follow actively twitter?

  164. Questions for the tweets – what do you do if/when you go “off twitter” and come back on? do you read past tweets? do you click on your favorite follow/er? do you begin at that moment? what percentage of the tweets you follow actively twitter?

  165. “The secret to Twitter is how many people are you listening to, not how many people are listening to you.”

    This comment is 100% correct. The amount of things you can learn on Twitter is endless if you pay attention.

  166. “The secret to Twitter is how many people are you listening to, not how many people are listening to you.”

    This comment is 100% correct. The amount of things you can learn on Twitter is endless if you pay attention.

  167. “The secret to Twitter is how many people are you listening to, not how many people are listening to you.”
    This comment is 100% correct. The amount of things you can learn on Twitter is endless if you pay attention.

  168. “The secret to Twitter is how many people are you listening to, not how many people are listening to you.”
    This comment is 100% correct. The amount of things you can learn on Twitter is endless if you pay attention.

  169. I manage the San Francisco Surfrider Twitter account, which has been incredibly helpful for us, and has a ton of followers (around 130) and we’re not following anyone since we’re using it mainly as a broadcasting medium.

    I encourage other orgs to do the same–it’s a great way to get news like beach cleans, and even oil spills, out to a large group of people instantly. Early detection, early response.

    @SFSurfrider

  170. I manage the San Francisco Surfrider Twitter account, which has been incredibly helpful for us, and has a ton of followers (around 130) and we’re not following anyone since we’re using it mainly as a broadcasting medium.

    I encourage other orgs to do the same–it’s a great way to get news like beach cleans, and even oil spills, out to a large group of people instantly. Early detection, early response.

    @SFSurfrider

  171. Consequence:
    (1) If listening to a lot of birds in the Twitter cage shows your ability to learn more, meet more and find out more stuff this “more” aspect also diverts your attention.
    (2) If we replace “more” with “focus” we arrive at the Golden Rule update 1.0, your number-hunt is over now,
    breath out and feel free again.
    (3) Realize that THIS is how you want to be treated.
    Enjoy!

  172. Consequence:
    (1) If listening to a lot of birds in the Twitter cage shows your ability to learn more, meet more and find out more stuff this “more” aspect also diverts your attention.
    (2) If we replace “more” with “focus” we arrive at the Golden Rule update 1.0, your number-hunt is over now,
    breath out and feel free again.
    (3) Realize that THIS is how you want to be treated.
    Enjoy!

  173. [...] couple days ago, after months of thinking about how to consume more information, I was inspired by Scoble’s post to switch off of a standard HTTP Twitter API polling application (Twitterific) and move to a Jabber [...]

  174. I love this school of thought. I use Twitter as an educational and conversational tool. I’m glad you spoke out against those who primarily use Twitter as a popularity contest. That’s not what it’s all about.

  175. I love this school of thought. I use Twitter as an educational and conversational tool. I’m glad you spoke out against those who primarily use Twitter as a popularity contest. That’s not what it’s all about.

  176. Can you believe it’s been a year since we recorded that video about “what is Twitter” in San Jose? Crazy how it’s still evolving and our experience with it is changing.

    What will a year bring?

  177. Can you believe it’s been a year since we recorded that video about “what is Twitter” in San Jose? Crazy how it’s still evolving and our experience with it is changing.

    What will a year bring?

  178. Robert, I’ve been moving to this approach and am loving it. It’s definitely not for everyone. I’ve been covering it in my blog and describing the transition from personal Twittering (tools to use, effects, etc) at http://solyoung.com.

    So far, two days of being in the ‘flow’.

    Thanks for the inspiration.

  179. Robert, I’ve been moving to this approach and am loving it. It’s definitely not for everyone. I’ve been covering it in my blog and describing the transition from personal Twittering (tools to use, effects, etc) at http://solyoung.com.

    So far, two days of being in the ‘flow’.

    Thanks for the inspiration.

  180. Thats a great point of view. I joined twitter and couple of weeks ago and yep, do look at how many people follow me. Now shall look at it the other way round, how many people i follow and the new things i learn about

    cheers,
    ashish
    twitter.com/ashish_mumbai

  181. Thats a great point of view. I joined twitter and couple of weeks ago and yep, do look at how many people follow me. Now shall look at it the other way round, how many people i follow and the new things i learn about

    cheers,
    ashish
    twitter.com/ashish_mumbai

  182. I followed a few hundred people in my new city, and learned more in a week about my city’s attitudes and hotspots and culture than I had learned in the previous year of living there.

  183. I followed a few hundred people in my new city, and learned more in a week about my city’s attitudes and hotspots and culture than I had learned in the previous year of living there.

  184. I talked a little about how I use Twitter here: http://shaidorsai.wordpress.com/2008/03/03/twitter-what-it-is-and-how-i-use-it/

    Like many others, I use Twitter to learn. @scobleizer and @gapingvoid can tweet enough to drown the updates from other folk I follow.

    Should you whinge about it? No, twitter’s lovely for that. First, cut off the notifications; still too much? Unfollow them. I don’t lose Hugh or Robert’s thoughts, I read them through RSS via a High Volume Tweets page I set up in netvibes.

    I follow some thought leaders, some friends & colleagues, some folk nearby geographically. (Some fall into more than one category :) )

    If I’m not getting much out of it, I unfollow. I’m certain others do the same. I check with http://dossy.org/twitter/karma/ occasionally to see if anyone’s started following me. I’ll always follow back – initially to learn more about who’s interested in me.

  185. I talked a little about how I use Twitter here: http://shaidorsai.wordpress.com/2008/03/03/twitter-what-it-is-and-how-i-use-it/

    Like many others, I use Twitter to learn. @scobleizer and @gapingvoid can tweet enough to drown the updates from other folk I follow.

    Should you whinge about it? No, twitter’s lovely for that. First, cut off the notifications; still too much? Unfollow them. I don’t lose Hugh or Robert’s thoughts, I read them through RSS via a High Volume Tweets page I set up in netvibes.

    I follow some thought leaders, some friends & colleagues, some folk nearby geographically. (Some fall into more than one category :) )

    If I’m not getting much out of it, I unfollow. I’m certain others do the same. I check with http://dossy.org/twitter/karma/ occasionally to see if anyone’s started following me. I’ll always follow back – initially to learn more about who’s interested in me.

  186. Hey Jason, When You Reach #1, Then What?

    As I’m sure everyone reading this already knows, Jason Calacanis is offering a free MacBook Air to a lucky person following him when he becomes the #1 user on Twitter. If I hadn’t already been following him at the time,

  187. I’m ‘Damiano’ on twitter and I couldn’t agree more with you. I’m presently 9th on Twitterholic.com and learning so much from the community I’m following and it’s having a wonderfully indirect effect on my life!

  188. I’m ‘Damiano’ on twitter and I couldn’t agree more with you. I’m presently 9th on Twitterholic.com and learning so much from the community I’m following and it’s having a wonderfully indirect effect on my life!

  189. I totally agree. There’s so much good and interesting stuff, sometimes I don’t actually tweet much but I still get a lot of out of it from those I follow.

    I’ve found great resources from some of those tweets.

    ~ Annie

  190. I totally agree. There’s so much good and interesting stuff, sometimes I don’t actually tweet much but I still get a lot of out of it from those I follow.

    I’ve found great resources from some of those tweets.

    ~ Annie

  191. It’s not just a matter of how many you follow, BUT it’s probably more important WHO you follow.

    I tried an experiment for a couple of weeks by following a number of folks via SMS notification and I “bookmarked” the tweets:

    http://beta.treasuremytext.com/SMS/drthomasho?p=true

    that I found helpful so now I have a much better idea of WHO to follow, especially when I turn SMS notification back on.

  192. Beefin in the Blogosphere…

    Bloggers trying to buck up and beef with each other in cyberspace is like 50 Cent and Ja Rule with USB keys. You can just imagine the trash talk “Yeah mess with me and I got a Perez Hilton redirect for you right here, son!”…

  193. [...] Robert Scoble zegt dat het geheim van Twitter is om zoveel mogelijk mensen te volgen. Dan kun je beter luisteren en hoor je meer interessante dingen. Ik snap hem niet. Wie niet behept is met zijn bovenmenselijke vermogen om ontelbare informatiestromen te filteren hoort slechts ruis waar je geen wijs uit kunt worden. [...]

  194. I don’t follow more than 110 profiles because I’m incapable to do that. But if I have more followers that people I follow, it doesn’t mean I’m a bad listener or I’m not interested in get smarter, or anything like that. I agree there are people who just want to increase the number of people who follows him, and people who wanna have more followers. But we can’t creat a pattern where we talk about “people”. =).

    But I think the most important thing it’s not if I agree or disagree with you. More important than that is that you’re thinking about a new tool on the internet, that we don’t know it very well. For the first time, I “saw” someone who thinks like that.

    Good post!

  195. I don’t follow more than 110 profiles because I’m incapable to do that. But if I have more followers that people I follow, it doesn’t mean I’m a bad listener or I’m not interested in get smarter, or anything like that. I agree there are people who just want to increase the number of people who follows him, and people who wanna have more followers. But we can’t creat a pattern where we talk about “people”. =).

    But I think the most important thing it’s not if I agree or disagree with you. More important than that is that you’re thinking about a new tool on the internet, that we don’t know it very well. For the first time, I “saw” someone who thinks like that.

    Good post!

  196. Good article, Robert. What really fascinated me where the people who left long, angry comments about how Twitter is a waste of time and makes their blood boil. What kind of person takes the time to read an article on how to more effectively use a website they already consider a waste of time and then take the time to get all worked up and write a long negative comment? Maybe they actually enjoy having their blood boil.

    Bill Hibbler
    http://twitter.com/gigtime

  197. Good article, Robert. What really fascinated me where the people who left long, angry comments about how Twitter is a waste of time and makes their blood boil. What kind of person takes the time to read an article on how to more effectively use a website they already consider a waste of time and then take the time to get all worked up and write a long negative comment? Maybe they actually enjoy having their blood boil.

    Bill Hibbler
    http://twitter.com/gigtime

  198. [...] Scoble recently commented that the secret to twitter is to follow more people, that way you get to learn more. I agree that is it important. However that doesn’t give you [...]

  199. [...] too boring to write in email, blogs, instant messages, or so forth… What changed things was this great article about Twitter by Robert Scoble. Basically, the trick to Twitter is not linking to a bunch of the [...]

  200. Hello, I feel so much better. I follow over two thousand people. It is actually quite interesting to read some of the comments over at twitter. This is also the most productive site for traffic to my website. It took me a while to figure out twitter, but I am slowly getting the hang of it.

  201. Hello, I feel so much better. I follow over two thousand people. It is actually quite interesting to read some of the comments over at twitter. This is also the most productive site for traffic to my website. It took me a while to figure out twitter, but I am slowly getting the hang of it.

  202. FAIL.

    Quality, not quantity.

    1. You’re trying to learn more.
    No. the people following 30,000 users are trying to advertise or be cool because they are not. You will not learn from them.

    2. You’re trying to meet more people.
    You want to meet people? Try using the ‘track’ function and your city name.

    3. You’re trying to be a better listener.
    LOLFAIL

    4. You’re communicating to the world that you’d like to be listened to (golden rule: treat people how you’d like to be treated).
    A more effective way would be for a blogger to comment on other blogs. Cause if you really have something to say, you will say it in more than 140 characters.

    5. You’re trying to find out about more stuff. More events. More stories.
    Public timeline. Public timeline. Public timeline.

    Follow quality individuals, not the next guy who adds you using twitter adding bots. You want the best variety and the most information, public timeline.

    Twitter is having a lot of trouble coping with the demand right now. All these new guys springing up adding everyone means more strain. I have no problem with having a busy and interesting timeline with the small number of people i follow. One might say that gives me a very narrow few on things. NOPE. I also watch the news, read blogs, ect. twitter is not your only source.

    It’s like those randoms that add you on Facebook because they searched a random name and thought you were cute. Ew. Not cool.

    Its social networking, not a numbers game. Connect to the people that you ACTUALLY connect with.

    Anyways, don’t want to go on too long, you get it…

    Respect. Love your articles.

  203. FAIL.

    Quality, not quantity.

    1. You’re trying to learn more.
    No. the people following 30,000 users are trying to advertise or be cool because they are not. You will not learn from them.

    2. You’re trying to meet more people.
    You want to meet people? Try using the ‘track’ function and your city name.

    3. You’re trying to be a better listener.
    LOLFAIL

    4. You’re communicating to the world that you’d like to be listened to (golden rule: treat people how you’d like to be treated).
    A more effective way would be for a blogger to comment on other blogs. Cause if you really have something to say, you will say it in more than 140 characters.

    5. You’re trying to find out about more stuff. More events. More stories.
    Public timeline. Public timeline. Public timeline.

    Follow quality individuals, not the next guy who adds you using twitter adding bots. You want the best variety and the most information, public timeline.

    Twitter is having a lot of trouble coping with the demand right now. All these new guys springing up adding everyone means more strain. I have no problem with having a busy and interesting timeline with the small number of people i follow. One might say that gives me a very narrow few on things. NOPE. I also watch the news, read blogs, ect. twitter is not your only source.

    It’s like those randoms that add you on Facebook because they searched a random name and thought you were cute. Ew. Not cool.

    Its social networking, not a numbers game. Connect to the people that you ACTUALLY connect with.

    Anyways, don’t want to go on too long, you get it…

    Respect. Love your articles.

  204. yup

    It’s better to follow than to get more followers. If u are content with urself then it’s alright but if u want to explore and learn then find others. There are People waiting for U.

    ________
    Pratul
    Wide Circles

  205. yup

    It’s better to follow than to get more followers. If u are content with urself then it’s alright but if u want to explore and learn then find others. There are People waiting for U.

    ________
    Pratul
    Wide Circles

  206. [...] to you, and who follows you also matters. Robert Scoble talks about this at length in his post, The Secret to Twitter, and Lionel Menchaca of Dell summarized it well by saying “The quality of the people you [...]

  207. I suppose it could be said that following a lot of people makes one indiscriminate. But that’s just playing devil’s advocate. The more I delve into the annals of Twitter, the more I find that I want to know – and people that I want to learn it from.

  208. I suppose it could be said that following a lot of people makes one indiscriminate. But that’s just playing devil’s advocate. The more I delve into the annals of Twitter, the more I find that I want to know – and people that I want to learn it from.

  209. You make an excellent point. I had thought that myself. I’ve found that the person who does all the talking doesn’t learn anything. All he hears is his own voice, which is useless. But the person who actually “listens” to others will learn new things, get new ideas and have more value going forward.

  210. You make an excellent point. I had thought that myself. I’ve found that the person who does all the talking doesn’t learn anything. All he hears is his own voice, which is useless. But the person who actually “listens” to others will learn new things, get new ideas and have more value going forward.

  211. I find it helpful and interesting to follow lots of interesting people, but often worry that when folks assume a profile is spam-following to get followers when they see a profile that follows 3x as many as follow back.

  212. I find it helpful and interesting to follow lots of interesting people, but often worry that when folks assume a profile is spam-following to get followers when they see a profile that follows 3x as many as follow back.

  213. Does anybody have a clue as to how unbalanced your ratio can get before Twitter suspends your account? I want to follow a ton more in the 2-3 niches I monitor, but I’m already about -200 (1122 to 911) and don’t feel like getting zapped for being a good listener, as Robert suggests.

  214. Does anybody have a clue as to how unbalanced your ratio can get before Twitter suspends your account? I want to follow a ton more in the 2-3 niches I monitor, but I’m already about -200 (1122 to 911) and don’t feel like getting zapped for being a good listener, as Robert suggests.

  215. You have hit the twitter nail on the head! Very few celebrities like you would venture such statements- they all would love to have as many followers as possible- very few people listen to others- so they learn very little- regards- hiro bachani- mg. director- http://www.merlin-me.com – i am on twitter as— rajnihiro—– and on facebook as hiro bachani- our Merlin products are becoming hotter , and more hot-

  216. You have hit the twitter nail on the head! Very few celebrities like you would venture such statements- they all would love to have as many followers as possible- very few people listen to others- so they learn very little- regards- hiro bachani- mg. director- http://www.merlin-me.com – i am on twitter as— rajnihiro—– and on facebook as hiro bachani- our Merlin products are becoming hotter , and more hot-

  217. Just wanted to point out my auto friend follower software. I’v used it sucessfully very often.

    I have noticed that your follow to follower ratio needs be good or twitter will investigate your account for autofollow reasons, but if you only target people you would normally follow.

    Take a look at it here http://tinyurl.com/autofollowme

  218. Just wanted to point out my auto friend follower software. I’v used it sucessfully very often.

    I have noticed that your follow to follower ratio needs be good or twitter will investigate your account for autofollow reasons, but if you only target people you would normally follow.

    Take a look at it here http://tinyurl.com/autofollowme

  219. twitter has become so much spam nowadays, I received like 10 eben pagan follows in like 2 weeks, and it`s really loosing it`s effectivness because of it. Although folks at twitter are trying to weed out the spammers and it really shows that they are making an effort. hope they get better in time

  220. twitter has become so much spam nowadays, I received like 10 eben pagan follows in like 2 weeks, and it`s really loosing it`s effectivness because of it. Although folks at twitter are trying to weed out the spammers and it really shows that they are making an effort. hope they get better in time

  221. What does following a lot of people say?
    It says you’re full of shit if you think people will consider that a positive thing.

    It also indicates you’re using auto-follow applications, and are probably a spammer.

    If you are following people in the thousands, you are not watching anybody’s tweets. The timeline moves too quickly. This is just common sense. I have 500 followers and follow about the same. At any given moment, I am always receiving more tweets than can appear on my screen. Using groups, in TweetDeck, I have a seperate tab for the users I am really following. There’s about 30 of them under “friends”. Sure, I catch the odd tweet here and there, but miss 90% unless I’ve marked you as being of interest.

    This is an odd article with an odd sort of apologetics to spamming. I imagine you’re writing it to explain why you’re using autofollow and spamming techniques? I can see no other reason for this kind of spin. If you’re following thousands of people, it’s not showing us you want to learn, it’s showing us that you want followbacks and that you’re missing 99% of your tweets.

  222. What does following a lot of people say?
    It says you’re full of shit if you think people will consider that a positive thing.

    It also indicates you’re using auto-follow applications, and are probably a spammer.

    If you are following people in the thousands, you are not watching anybody’s tweets. The timeline moves too quickly. This is just common sense. I have 500 followers and follow about the same. At any given moment, I am always receiving more tweets than can appear on my screen. Using groups, in TweetDeck, I have a seperate tab for the users I am really following. There’s about 30 of them under “friends”. Sure, I catch the odd tweet here and there, but miss 90% unless I’ve marked you as being of interest.

    This is an odd article with an odd sort of apologetics to spamming. I imagine you’re writing it to explain why you’re using autofollow and spamming techniques? I can see no other reason for this kind of spin. If you’re following thousands of people, it’s not showing us you want to learn, it’s showing us that you want followbacks and that you’re missing 99% of your tweets.

  223. I like freedom and when people start dictating a million rules as to what to do, or not do, then it does not feel like American freedom anymore. As soon as something is created like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, etc. people write up stuff that ultimately sets the stage of judging your worth on that site. We are all worthy and just might not fulfill the politically correct platform, which is really what FREEDOM is all about in America. In turn, I take what is said in stride, and go checkout the profiles, etc on my own terms. I also always support the underdog that does not fit the politically correct format.

    Twitter is here to post whatever you want, as long as it is within proper guidelines, as far as I'm concerned. I'm not a celebrity so I have to work harder of course. Usually celebrities do not respond either, so following them is not that beneficial, but more for fun I guess.

  224. Following a lot of people does not mean anything negative just because you want to do so. It is only negative if your 'why' is for spam. Because of encrypted twitter names and other variables, it is necessary to choose many to follow in order to find out more about their value in their tweets to you. It is a way of learning who is out there in Twitter, and finding a variety of topics to discuss with new people you meet.

    Because of the Twitter scrolling format of displaying the tweets, it is not reasonable to expect to keep up with everyone you either follow, or are following you, all the time. The whole world online moves too fast, and how these types of apps help or hinder, are still relatively new on the Internet. Also the word Spam is way overused anymore. I think AOL always SPAMMED the universe with their stuff since the beginning of AOL, but hey, people say no not so because they paid money for it all. Well today there are many types of communications that do not require money upfront in order to get your message out there, so people will take advantage of it.

    Today SPAM is all relative anymore.

  225. Spread the word…twitter allows to give away knowledge…and start listening to knowledge of other people. What a great way to learn about life, people, your work, your interests.

  226. i try and follow roughly in equal amounts as i find if i am following too many people i just cant keep up and maintain relationships with them, i do dseem to get a few followers coming from my website http://www.chewingbrokenglass.com which is always good, but most of my followers are people i have followed

    @tri5tan

  227. I agree and disagree.

    I follow a fair amount of people (475 currently) and have a fair amount of followers as well (661 right now.)

    Following a lot of people makes sure there is always something new to read, not just the same posts you saw 5x today already because there aren't enough posts to roll it off your page. Since I follow a variety of people in a variety of interest groups, I have a variety of different info presented to me all day.

    On the flipside, having a lot of followers, is important too. Now I probably don't need 100,000, but it is nice to have quite a few. Why? What if I need an opinion or recommendation? More people = more input. What if I am trying to find info on a subject I am unfamiliar with? Again, more people = more input. And more input = more conversations = more knowledge. Plus, when you have something to say it is nice to know that at least someone heard you.

    Sometimes to be able to listen, you have to be able to engage a convo. So I think both your followers and your followees are important numbers as they both enable you to be more interactive and to learn more :)