A brief Twitter row this morning over “following back” – reciprocating network relationships – got me thinking about my own practices.
I’m happy to use Twitter how I like, and also glad that I’ve been able to build a significant community of people who are cool with that.
Over times, I’ve noted a few reasons why people do and do not (or do and then stop) follow me on Twitter.
I know a lot about communications and politics, even though I don’t always practice what I preach.
The second “yes” is that I’m generally kind and helpful, though, like everyone, I have my bad days.
I am openly Christian, but also a leftist on economic issues. Those two viewpoints don’t seem to be too common together, so some people stop following or choose not to in the first place. I also will stop following people who are thoughtlessly disrespectful of those elements of who I am. It’s not a big deal, I just don’t need hate from either side. Those people I stop following may also choose to stop following me.
The other “no” reason is that at points during the day, such as when I’m on transit or sitting down decompressing with Tweetdeck, I update a lot. A LOT. Some people are cool with that, and some are not. Many of those who are not are friends in real life, or are connected with me on other networks. And that’s very cool.
I like people to get to know me, and I like getting to know you. I have my opinions on Twitter culture, but I’m not going to force them on anyone else. If you don’t like how someone else is using Twitter, you don’t have to follow them, but you also don’t need to bully them into your viewpoint.
We’re all unique, and isn’t that what makes this experiment in mass community so interesting?