Except for the eight days when I had a serious case of Social Media Burnout, I’ve been on Twitter every day since March of 2009. There are some very interesting observations I’ve made recently. If you have been on Twitter a long time too, I know you will relate to what I’m going to describe.
Back when I first started, obviously there were not as many people using the site. It was a much smaller community, and there weren’t as many bots. People were using those auto-systems to increase their followers (most of those are banned now), and overall it was very different than it is now.
It really only makes sense that things have changed. Twitter is like any other community of people. As it grows larger, it evolves. The site itself changes, along with the people on it. Back in the day (2009), there were “unofficial rules” that most people attempted to follow. The new people would quickly try to learn the rules when they joined so they would be accepted into the group.
For example, back then; many people wouldn’t follow a Twitter account without an avatar. Scheduled tweets and auto tweets were frowned upon. I also remember that back then people (me included) even tried to watch the percentage of how many of our tweets were replies to people, how many were links and how many were engaging, etc… There were even rules about how many tweets per day was appropriate.
However, most all that is different now. Most people have learned the importance of engaging with others on Twitter, but the majority of everything else has gone out the window in favor of us accepting each other’s individualism and tweeting personalities. As a result, it feels so much more natural to me. It’s nice to see people branching out and trying new things on Twitter. We can learn so much from our differences, and I love Twitter even more for it. Therefore, In my opinion, the most important Twitter rule for 2011 is kindness and acceptance. As Twitter continues to evolve, trying to enforce “the right way and the wrong way” to tweet is no longer a fit. Richard wrote an article a while back called 10 Ways Some Followers Are Ruining Your Twitter Style that touched on this.
Just like my two obnoxious cousins make our family Thanksgiving dinner more interesting, sometimes a few Twitter people I follow spice things up too. If anyone ever tweets anything I cannot accept for some reason, I click on the unfollow button, that is what it’s there for. Simple as that. If you are new on Twitter, don’t miss out on the opportunity to grow and develop your own style of tweeting. Although there are certain things that are considered good Twitter etiquette, nothing trumps being yourself and having fun. Don’t worry about doing it wrong. If you are smiling and having a good time, you are doing it right!
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