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Twitter Etiquette – Where’s Miss Manners when I need her?

I’m relatively new to Twitter. (I joined within the past couple months.) So I’ve had to learn a whole new language, things like “tweet” and “retweet” and “DM” and hashtags and who knows what else. I’m more filled with questions than anything. I need rules! I need guidelines! I keep asking: Where are Miss Manners’ rules for Twitter? Where are the “Tweeting for Dummies” books!? 

So I figured I’d post a list of my questions, and if anyone can answer, wonderful! Here I go…

1.  If someone “follows” me, what is the appropriate response? Do I thank him/her with a reply, with a DM? (That’s “direct message”…right?)
2.  If someone follows me, is it proper etiquette to follow back? If I don’t follow back, will the other person be insulted? (I don’t want to insult!)
3. Is there a simple glossary somewhere?

4.  Likewise, is there a list somewhere of all the common (must follow) hashtags? For example, I just this morning discovered “amwriting.” I think that means morning writing…right? As opposed to “(I) AM writing”? What other hashtags do I need to know about?

5. How important is it to participate in those daily exercises, you know, like Follow Friday? I mean, what’s the purpose or goal?

6.  Does anyone really read all those tweets? I mean, they just download continually on the screen in front of me. It’s hypnotizing!

7. Is it better to post links to interesting articles, or updates of your activities? Or maybe a mix? 

8. What do I do when I get a notice that someone completely unexpected is following me and I can’t figure out why? Do I “DM” that person and respectfully ask if he/she made a mistake, give him/her a chance to “un”follow gracefully? 

9. Conversely, what do I do if I follow someone by mistake and decide to “un”follow? Do I send that person a note and explain why, or just click the stupid button and let the chips fall where they may?

As you can see, this whole Twitter thing has filled me with angst. For any out there who are Twitter champs, your advice is sorely needed. Maybe you should write a book for us Twitter illiterates! If you do, let me know!

Happy tweeting, all!

3 thoughts on “Twitter Etiquette – Where’s Miss Manners when I need her?”

  1. Well, if someone DOES write a dummies guide to Twitter, please let me know. I’ve been tweeting for a few months and am still floundering.

    About the only thing I can clear up for you is, #amwriting means “I am writing”, regardless of the time of day. The same goes for #amediting. So if you do a search for those hashtags, you’ll be connected with other tweeps? twits? twitterer? who are pounding the keys, or their foreheads.

    Oh, and I post a mix of interesting blogs/articles, and updates on my glamourous life.

  2. 1. You can, but it’s unnecessary
    2. You can, but again not necessary.
    4. No, not really. You just kind of stumble upon them, or create your own.
    5. Not necessary. #FF can be useful, but it’s not like they’ll revoke your membership if you don’t do it.
    6. No
    7. Your preference… but, a mix is better. Often people will do Currently Reading: then link. Also, use to shorten urls
    8. You don’t have to do anything. I wouldn’t DM them… You can always block them, otherwise just ignore them.
    9. They won’t know if you unfollow them, so you’re safe. Generally speaking, no one cares if you follow or unfollow them

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