published: false title: How to use Twitter categories: [relationships, how-to] tags: [twitter, social-media] –

How to use Twitter and what I am learning.

I had a very active Facebook account. With over 1000 friends but usually always engaged with about 100-150 of them. I measured this by how many posts got traction or were viewed. Then when the Facebook privacy concerns popped up. I took the drastic step of removing my Facebook. But it wasn’t in retaliation to Facebook as a company or a movement (I believe and admire the audacious goal of connecting people). It is incredibly hard. I believe we are yet to see the genius behind Mark Zuckerberg’s thinking of owning the top 3 social networks in the world.

The move to remove Facebook was sudden but then it caused an effect which I feel today. Lack of communication with a lot of people but more importantly a lack of audience to post my thoughts too. It also told me that a platform that is owned by someone else is almost always out of my control while being subjected to a lot of privacy changes. They can re-use content you create for their purpose. This doesn’t mean you don’t use social networks. It just means you should have a domain.

For me that domain is this website. It’s been neglected.

The next step I took though was to get back to Facebook to reconnect. It was a chore. Content was sporadic. Half the friends didn’t know where I had gone. Some got upset that I unfriended them when I actually deleted my account. I was constantly bombarded to enable notifications through the messenger app or the main app. It was a LOT of work for very little reward because most of my friends stopped using Facebook and moved on to Whatsapp. There are still a few, and this amazes and amuses me, that in 2019 they are discovering Facebook. Some of them, like my mom, has become very comfortable with Facebook and doesn’t like any other network.

But Facebook as a social network was great for groups and selling and buying. Not to mention being scammed online too by fake sellers that I lost some money on. But that is a well known issue that Facebook is wrestling with and I’ll detail my experiences and ideas on what they can change later here.

I needed to find a Social network that I could connect with people on but also gleam ideas and interact digitally to grow. That network is now Twitter.

Twitter was a network that I joined a long time back (2008 I believe). I never deleted the account because frankly deleting tweets was a pain in the ass and removing the whole account was a mystery to me. But fundamentally there were no privacy concerns for Twitter. They haven’t had a Cambridge analytica moment so the fear wasn’t accentuated.

But Twitter is a mysterious platform. I wanted to get the coveted blue mark but that’s primarily as a status signal in the start. I realised though that when you get a blue check mark, in your replies you are taken more seriously. This is assuming your content that follows makes sense as well else someone is left wondering, “why did this idiot get the blue tick mark?”. But there’s no great guide on learning how to use Twitter and I try to gather all that here. Things I have learned using Twitter. So I don’t believe this post will be complete for quite some time and might be a work in progress. But if you find greater success than I do in building your twitter utility and audience, I’d be glad.

Also Twitter’s on boarding is quite bad. Both the mobile app and the web app. There’s so much wealth of information on how to get good at Twitter and interact there but I don’t understand why Twitter doesn’t put that up in one great guide that anyone could download. They have all the data.

The first step of getting on to Twitter is to create an account of course. I am presuming you have done that. Here’s where it gets interesting.

Choose a field or two. It’s frankly very hard to keep track of more. And follow all the people in it. Alternatively you can create lists for those people but lists is another very unfriendly user experience trap mine to create and build. Follow my lists here.

Browsing through people’s likes. Recommendations from books that they talk about.

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The Wired method for email productivity.

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  • Inbox: the inbox is a holding pen. Emails shouldn’t stay here any longer than it takes for you to file them into another folder. The exception to this rule is when you respond immediately and are waiting for an immediate response.

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//URL Links Linked text in blue or some other color