Twitter is an important social platform for short message communication – not just for American Presidents. Thus, people should know how to interact with other Twitter users. In the following I want to show the seven ways of interaction between Twitter users – and my personal interpretation of it.
Whenever you like a certain tweet, you can give the author some feedback – without writing a single word. Just click the little red heart and “like” the tweet. For a very long time, this was called “favour” or “to fav”, depicted with a neat little yellow star, until Twitter decided to spread more love.
Please be careful! People use these favs in various ways. Some want to return their agreement, want to give you good feelings. However, don’t be shocked whenever you write a posting like “I’ve broken my leg!” and people fav it – they usually either want to show you they share your pain. Or they use these little icons to bookmark tweets they’ve already read.
Some people say there is a fav limit. I’ve never reached it so far, but seemingly you cannot fav everything.
Note that many people think it to be good manners to fav other people’s tweets in a discussion. It is like acknowledgement for the nice and decent conversation.
Sometimes you do not just want to write 140 characters, but you want to link your message with somebody. Either directly, because you want to talk to somebody. Or you just want to hint other people towards another user account. In those cases, you use “mentions”, by adding the @USERNAME to your tweet.
Important note: Whenever a tweet starts with a Twitter account name, Twitter assumes you want to write a direct mention or reply. Only you, the other account and all accounts which follow you both will be able to read it. Others would have to search for it. Thus, many people who want to start a sentence with user accounts put a little “.” before the user account itself. Like: “.@donaldduck is a neat little duck”.
This is Twitter highend content. You assume that your beloved one is reading you – and write some Twitter lines without mentioning him, hoping he or she will read it. And know he/she is addressed. Some people absolutely dislike replies to such nonmentions, so be careful and don’t freak them out. Be also aware that nonmentions are absolutely stupid – if you have something you wanna tell somebody, address him and don’t make it public. Otherwise, don’t offend people who react on your tweet.
Whenever somebody writes a tweet, you can reply to it. Just click the little arrow underneath and write your answer. Please use this arrow! By doing so, Twitter will realise that these two tweets are connected to each other. Which makes conversations much more readable. Don’t worry – some people claim Twitter wouldn’t be a chatting platform. It is. Chat as much as you want to. They need to be annoyed.
Please note that many Twitter users do not like criticism. They want you to agree, to strengthen their opinion, to pat them on the shoulder. Be aware that critique or little refusal of their theories might lead directly to a block. Do also note that many Twitter users tend to disqualify other users by calling their replies “replies from hell“. It is their way of telling “I cannot cope with your intelligent answer”.
If you really want to boost a friend of yours – or another Twitter user who writes awesome stuff – retweet him. All your followers will then see his/her tweet, plus the information that it was you who shared it. Thus be careful – even though another guy might have written bullshit, if you retweet it, everyone knows your spreading bullshit as well. Think twice! Retweeting is a neat and very nice way of promoting other accounts. Do it often and regularly. People will love you for doing it.
A new retweet feature. You have to be careful with it. The original message will be shown, and your own tweet on top of it. Actually a nice feature, as you are able not just to share tweets, but to share your own opinion as well. Note that there are two versions of quotes:
- The nice quote, where you share another user’s tweet and add some additional thoughts, thank for the idea, the joke or the view.
- The evil quotes, where you share the other opinion and write bad stuff about it. People may think you want to make a fool of them. Even if you want to do so – don’t. This is super bad style. Do NEVER quote when you actually just wanna make conversation. Super bad style!
Direct Messages (DM)
If you follow each other, you are able to send direct messages. Fortunately, your direct messages are no longer bound to 140 characters. Thus, you can write whole books if you want to. Nobody else will be able to read your messages – except you are part of a DM-group. Well, but you all have WhatsApp and such apps, so you will know how it works. Please be aware that privacy is no approval for bad manners. You should never insult people or write rude stuff. And men – no woman on Twitter is interested in dick pics. If you are a man, send the face. Police tracing by genitals is never a cool thing.
Of course, there is more about Twitter – if you now feel ready to dive into this fantastic social world, don’t forget there are many more unwritten rules. You will learn them. Learning by doing, learning by failing. First and most important rule, though: follower count is not that important. Okay, it is your currency, shows your market value and can actually bring you some money. But hey. Who needs money, right?
Have fun tweeting!