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Freaking Twitter... someone help.
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Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-01-27, 14:38

Can someone please explain to me how this God-forsaken technology works? I've set up my account successfully, changed the background, started following select people, have a few followers, have Tweeted successfully. What I DON'T understand is how this concept of "Reply" and "Retweet" work, or why I'd want to do one vs. the other from a "get the right people to notice me" standpoint.

Retweeting it seems is a way to draw people from your Tweet page, to a blog, another tweet page or something outside the tweetsphere that interests your followers. Retweets ONLY show up on MY tweet page right, not followers?

Replying seems like it should be obvious, but when I go to a person I'm following and who's following me and I "reply", it takes me back to my page and replies but doesn't show up on their page. WTF is the point of that? So everyone has to go to every other person they follow to see if someone commented on one of their tweets? That's fucking retarded (if I'm understanding it right). Please help. I want to quit this POS system so badly but I know it's important to business so... you know... help a brother out.

...into the light of a dark black night.
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jdcfsu
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Florida
 
2010-01-27, 14:50

Retweeting is used to send something someone said on your follow list to everyone else. I think it's stupid because if everyone wants to know what that person says, they'd be following them in the first place.

Replying is a way of directly responding to something someone says. So if you like something I said, or want to make a comment or answer a question, then you use @username and respond to them. It's a way of creating a threaded conversation out of chaos. If you reply to someone and they don't follow you, it won't show up on their main feed but it will show up in their 'mentions' tab. So it depends on the user and how they use the service. Some third-party apps will display all 'mentions' inline in the feed, but it depends on that app and the settings there.

Stick with it. It took me a few days of using Twitter heavily to really get the hang of how I wanted to use it. It's got a little bit of a learning curve in that there are literally a million different uses for the system.

90% of statistics can be made to say anything 50% of the time.
Website | Twitter
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kieran
Tweeting @kierankelly
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2010-01-27, 15:37

It took me a few months to really get into Twitter, but it really is an awesome tool.

There's no "right" way to use Twitter. People use it for anything and everything. I've got a mix of sports people, tech talk, Apple, cars, etc...

The new Retweeting is kind of odd, but people are starting to get the hang of it.

Just stick around on Twitter for a bit and you'll get it.
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Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-01-27, 15:57

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdcfsu View Post
Retweeting is used to send something someone said on your follow list to everyone else.
OK... see this if FUBAR. So you're saying, if I have 8 followers, and I retweet something from another person (maybe those 8 people follow that person already, maybe not - I don't know)... that it shows up not only on MY tweets page, but it shows up on their page too?

Quote:
Replying is a way of directly responding to something someone says. So if you like something I said, or want to make a comment or answer a question, then you use @username and respond to them. It's a way of creating a threaded conversation out of chaos. If you reply to someone and they don't follow you, it won't show up on their main feed but it will show up in their 'mentions' tab.
But it's really NOT threaded... because i replied to one guy that I am following (and who was following me first in fact), and it didn't show up on their page. I figured maybe this was because I saw THEIR tweet on MY follow page, and hit reply, and it then showed up only on MY tweets page. So I deleted, and went to their page, clicked reply directly on the post... and after I typed everything in and sent, it STILL only showed up (AFAICT) on my page. I put a little apology in there in case it showed up twice but I dont even think it showed up once.

For that matter what happens when you delete something... does it disappear off the followers' boards? Arggh! Maddening.

...into the light of a dark black night.
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julesstoop
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Leiden, the Netherlands
 
2010-01-27, 16:19

When using twitter from a web browser, as I assume you do, you won't see your own @Person's-page-you-visit tweets on their page (what you get when you click their name). They'll only appear from your own page. The messages do arrive though, don't worry.

Someone else who follows you won't be able to see those messages on the receivers side either, but will be able to see you sent an @Somebodyelse message if you're and the third person are both following each other, a.fa.i.k.

You can also send a personal message (sort of an SMS, essentially). This is something really only the receiver of the message will be able to read.

A black hole is where god divided by zero.
http://settuno.com/
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kieran
Tweeting @kierankelly
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2010-01-27, 16:23

I think an easier way to get into Twitter is to use a client.

I hardly ever use Twitter.com. When I'm not on my own computer, I use Seesmic Web. Good Web interface for Twitter.

On my iPhone and MacBook Air, it's Tweetie all the way. Best Twitter client out there.

A little easier to understand IMO than Twitter.com
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jdcfsu
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Florida
 
2010-01-27, 16:24

This might help a little, maybe as a little primer: http://www.howcast.com/videos/149055-How-To-Use-Twitter
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Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-01-27, 16:34

Thanks guys. That video covers the stuff I do know. It's the interactions and knowing what ends up where when interacting that flummoxes me.

I am using .com (because I didn't know any other way). I've seen the name "tweetdeck" under some people's postings. But either way shouldn't all client types be able to post and see the same stuff on the same pages and lists? BTW, lists are basically one way streets right? For my readers? No reason I should put my own posts on one of my own lists, correct?

...into the light of a dark black night.
  quote
Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-01-27, 16:40

Also, I noticed some people use the # sign with trending topics in their messages. Does this help draw attention to your posts in the twitter system so people can find you?

...into the light of a dark black night.
  quote
kieran
Tweeting @kierankelly
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2010-01-27, 16:53

Yes, all clients put Tweets in the same places that .com does, it's just a little easier to see what is going on in a client, at least I think so.

The # is called a hashtag. Just a way to tag your tweet with a common search term. Makes it easier to find related tweets.
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Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-01-27, 17:20

Quote:
Originally Posted by kieran View Post
Yes, all clients put Tweets in the same places that .com does, it's just a little easier to see what is going on in a client, at least I think so.

The # is called a hashtag. Just a way to tag your tweet with a common search term. Makes it easier to find related tweets.

Thanks Kieran... so you mean... easier for others to find my tweets if they use that search term?
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kieran
Tweeting @kierankelly
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2010-01-27, 17:31

Yup. Twitter will hyperlink hashtags so when you click one it will do a search for that term. Pretty cool actually.
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jdcfsu
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Florida
 
2010-01-27, 17:33

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moogs View Post
Thanks Kieran... so you mean... easier for others to find my tweets if they use that search term?
Exactly, but some users (me included) find excessave (on any use) of hash tags annoying. It's good for conferences/conventions but it's become more of a waste for memes and spam at this point.

Really, the best way to figure it all out is to play with it for awhile. The reason you don't see your replies or posts on other users pages is because when you visit their page you only see their posts, the same way that if you visit your page when you're not logged in is just your posts as well.

90% of statistics can be made to say anything 50% of the time.
Website | Twitter
  quote
Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-01-27, 17:51

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdcfsu View Post
Really, the best way to figure it all out is to play with it for awhile. The reason you don't see your replies or posts on other users pages is because when you visit their page you only see their posts, the same way that if you visit your page when you're not logged in is just your posts as well.
Ah. Interesting... OK! I'll give it a shot... I'm sure I'll have more remedial tweet questions soon. Thanks to one and all!
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Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-01-29, 19:11

Anudda question: when you get a follower who isn't tweeting *anything* but has like 900 people they're following, and their profile involves "PR"... it's not uncool to disallow that is it? You only want to follow and be followed by people directly related somehow to what you're doing, right? Isn't that part of the visibility and ranking scheme? IOW following 10,000 people and vice-versa if the content isn't related, is useless right?

...into the light of a dark black night.
  quote
kieran
Tweeting @kierankelly
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2010-01-29, 19:17

I don't usually mind who follows me. That's their business if they want to try and follow a ton of people to get them to follow back.

I go through and block/unfollow every couple of weeks. It really is up to you.

Twitter is more about who you follow, rather than who follows you.
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Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-01-29, 19:21

Interesting. I had one a couple days ago that was clearly spam trying to get people to link up to prOn or something. Block-a-rama. Just leary of accounts with literally no tweets but I guess some people just use it like a social RSS?

...into the light of a dark black night.
  quote
kieran
Tweeting @kierankelly
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2010-01-30, 09:30

Yeah, there are a lot of random people that I follow, but it's a "good" random mix of things.

People following me? I don't really care about too much, unless as you experienced, getting spammed. Then I pull out the ban hammer.
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drewprops
Space Pirate
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Atlanta
 
2010-01-30, 10:18

Oh yeah, I need to re-follow Kieran again, now that baseball has cooled down a bit!! - might add you to an AN list.


...
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kieran
Tweeting @kierankelly
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2010-01-30, 15:29

Yeah, baseball is over. I still tweet a lot, but it's not all about baseball.
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Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-02-02, 09:47

Anudda question: if you post something and quickly delete it to repost with more info... does anyone see it? IOW is there a delay in how long people see your updates / a grace period for deleting things right away? Don't want to spam anyone but don't want to leave important info out either.

...into the light of a dark black night.
  quote
jdcfsu
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Florida
 
2010-02-02, 10:18

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moogs View Post
Anudda question: if you post something and quickly delete it to repost with more info... does anyone see it? IOW is there a delay in how long people see your updates / a grace period for deleting things right away? Don't want to spam anyone but don't want to leave important info out either.
In my experience, things will delete from the web feeds, ie Twitter.com, instantly. But stuff is pushed to third-party readers via API is at a little bit slower pace and, it appears, once something is posted via API if someone's reader picks it up, it's there to stay.

90% of statistics can be made to say anything 50% of the time.
Website | Twitter
  quote
Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-02-02, 11:36

Thanks "JD". FWIW talking about a delete within 20 seconds here... Hopefully no one noticed.

A few more:

• When I first started retweeting things, I had an opportunity to add a few words to the retweet before submitting it. IOW the retweet text would show up in my text field, but not submitted yet.

Now all my retweets just feed in automatically and I have no chance to add any thought, forcing me to write another post. Any idea what's happening there?

• Related; are retweets supposed to show up on your Home follow page? I guess only if the person you retweeted is following you, right?

• What's with lists... that's just for me to categorize who I'm following right? Does it make any sense to add myself to lists / can other people follow my list?

...into the light of a dark black night.
  quote
julesstoop
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Leiden, the Netherlands
 
2010-02-02, 12:35

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moogs View Post
Anudda question: if you post something and quickly delete it to repost with more info... does anyone see it? IOW is there a delay in how long people see your updates / a grace period for deleting things right away? Don't want to spam anyone but don't want to leave important info out either.
In my experience, twitter can be very fast. Yesterday somebody I follow posted a tweet from her iPhone. I sat next to her and received it on mine - using twitterific - within half a second, over 3G.

A black hole is where god divided by zero.
http://settuno.com/
  quote
jdcfsu
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Florida
 
2010-02-02, 13:23

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moogs View Post
• When I first started retweeting things, I had an opportunity to add a few words to the retweet before submitting it. IOW the retweet text would show up in my text field, but not submitted yet.

Now all my retweets just feed in automatically and I have no chance to add any thought, forcing me to write another post. Any idea what's happening there?
That's related to the new way that Twitter handles retweets. When retweeting using the twitter.com system, that seems to be the practice (in my quick experiment just now). Though, when using a third party client you can still add additional information, thoughts, etc provided the 140 character rule.

Quote:
• Related; are retweets supposed to show up on your Home follow page? I guess only if the person you retweeted is following you, right?
I'm not sure I follow. You mean if I retweet you, will it show up on my home page? In that case yes, but, because of the new system, it will appear that you made the comment as Twitter is basically crediting the original poster with all retweets now -- at least those done using the twitter.com homepage system.

Quote:
• What's with lists... that's just for me to categorize who I'm following right? Does it make any sense to add myself to lists / can other people follow my list?
Lists are a way for you to categorize the people you follow. Some common lists I've seen people have are things like Friends, Celebrities, News Feeds, Business Contacts, etc. When a list is created a special feed with all the tweets from just those people are created and it's given an address of twitter.com/username/listname. Once it's created, people can then choose to follow that particular list. In my experience it's not very popular at all. People like to create lists for their own sake, but they don't tend to be followed by anyone. But, as with everything related to twitter, it is what you want it to be. So make it and use it however works best for you.

90% of statistics can be made to say anything 50% of the time.
Website | Twitter
  quote
kieran
Tweeting @kierankelly
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2010-02-02, 14:57

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdcfsu View Post
In my experience, things will delete from the web feeds, ie Twitter.com, instantly. But stuff is pushed to third-party readers via API is at a little bit slower pace and, it appears, once something is posted via API if someone's reader picks it up, it's there to stay.
I've done the delete thing many times, but there always seems to be some jackass who manages to see it and comment on it. It all depends on when your followers are refreshing their timelines. As Justin said, Twitter.com is pretty quick with the takedowns, but other clients may take a while and give your followers a chance to see what you wanted deleted.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moogs View Post
A few more:

• When I first started retweeting things, I had an opportunity to add a few words to the retweet before submitting it. IOW the retweet text would show up in my text field, but not submitted yet.

Now all my retweets just feed in automatically and I have no chance to add any thought, forcing me to write another post. Any idea what's happening there?
This new RT is very confusing to people, as not all the clients have implemented it yet. Tweetie for Mac still doesn't have the new RT or lists. Waiting on the upgrade to that.

As for "why" the new RT works the way it is, I found Evan Williams, a Twitter co-founder, to explain it the best here.

The new way has it's benefits, but I'm not fully on board yet. If I need to add something via Tweetie 2, I just use the "Quote Tweet" function now. Otherwise, it's a straight RT, the new way.

Quote:
• Related; are retweets supposed to show up on your Home follow page? I guess only if the person you retweeted is following you, right?
I'm also confused by what you mean by this. If you RT something, it will show up on all of your followers' pages, unless they also follow the person who you RT'd, then it won't.

Quote:
• What's with lists... that's just for me to categorize who I'm following right? Does it make any sense to add myself to lists / can other people follow my list?
I haven't really gotten into Lists yet, but I'm listed on quite a few. The only lists I follow are people from my HS, people I actually know outside of Twitter, and the list of people from AN that tweet.
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Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-02-02, 15:45

Thanks for the feedback guys. I think what happened prior was that I accidentally was following myself and so when I retweeted something it also showed up on my "home page".

Also wondering if the "add comments to retweet" thing only happened when I directly retweeted from a URL outside twitter. IOW when I retweet a blog post, it works. When I retweet a tweet, it doesn't.

...into the light of a dark black night.
  quote
Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-02-26, 12:00

OK so what the hell is it when someone lists 7 or 8 names, then follows with "RTnx"?

I've also seen some people use 7 or 8 # phrases, and nothing else.

Also, is it considered bad form to include your twitter link in an email to someone in the same line of work you're introducing yourself to?

There are a few people who, if they were to follow me, could really boost my follower count but I'm obviously not going to ask outright. They have to decide for themselves if they like it, but I can't see any other way of getting them to notice my account exists in the first place. Twitter is like this endless stream of stuff where unless you post constantly (in which case many legit users will un-follow you), or just get lucky and post when someone is looking, everything is missed.

All I can figure is send them an email saying I have an interest in content xyz they posted, here's a site post of mine, and oh by the way my twitter link if you're interested. Otherwise it's like, if you reply to something, they never see it. If you retweet something they never see it (AFAICT). How the hell are you supposed to let people know you find their content worthwhile and are spreading it around, without sounding like you're just after a follow?

I still think this is little more than a self-promotion / marketing gimmick for most users (who are often companies, not individuals).

...into the light of a dark black night.
  quote
Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: NSA Archives
 
2010-02-28, 10:41

Moogs' Rule #1 of Twitter Qualification: if you see someone with roughly 3000 followers and are following 3000 people also, none of those people have anything interesting to say most likely. Apparently there are books and seminars out there where basically it's one big twitter circle-jerk. "You follow me and I'll follow you... who cares what it is that you're posting."

Also love those people with 2 posts and thousands of followers and a picture of a chic in skimpy clothes. Twitter's recommendation and spam killing system is uber-primitive IMO. Doesn't do a good job at all of separating the wheat from the chaff. Going to give this loonatic network another 30 days or so and if things haven't taken off in terms of directing traffic to my blog and other stuff, I'm going to bag it... total waste of time.

...into the light of a dark black night.
  quote
psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tennessee
 
2010-02-28, 11:06

You're not having a good go at this, are you? But I admire your persistence...you've stuck with it 88x longer than I ever would.
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