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This post is the result of reading Nicola Morgan’s great Twitter Workshop Posts and a quiet, self contained rant I’ve just had with the poodles about ‘people who follow me on twitter’. Not you of course, dear reader. I’m talking about the new followers, the ones I don’t follow back.

Let me explain.

@idiot1 is a new follower. I go to their twitter page to see who they are and learn a little about them. It seems they are a fellow writer, a photographer, a cook and a good laugh at a party. Sounds interesting, doesn’t it? So I follow back and before I can *wave* and say hello, up pops a Direct Message (DM) from @idiot1 saying,

“Hi! R U a writer, photographer, cook or all round humorist?My blog is at www.blah.com. Do you have one?”

This irks me greatly for 3 reasons.

  1. If you read my Bio you’d see I was a writer
  2. If you read my Bio you’d see I had a blog and where to find it
  3. I HATE AUTOMATED TWITTER MESSAGES FROM PEOPLE WHO CAN’T BE ARSED WITH REPLYING THEMSELVES.

This usually tells me that @idiot1 has no interest in me – can you imagine that? – and is just trying to get her follower numbers up, an exercise to which I see no point.

@idiot2 is a new follower. I go to their twitter page to see who they are and learn a little about them. It seems they are a fellow writer in the same genre as myself. Could be interesting so I look at their recent tweets. These appear to be a stream of links to on line articles about anything but writing.

@idiot3 is very similar to @idiot2, but he tweets links to articles about writing so I think maybe there is a possibility I might learn something from him and I hover over the follow button until I check out his previous 3 pages of tweets only to find he interacts with no one. Never has a conversation.

Erm, SOCIAL media, people? Doesn’t that suggest you be, you know, sociable?

Anyway, we move on to @idiot4 and @idiot5. I just tweeted something along the lines of, “Gawd, getting old sucks. Had to get up to use the loo three times last night L”.  I am immediately followed by these insensitive bastards who are punting female incontinence aids and stair lifts. Idiots.

@idiot6 wasn’t followed back because they only tweet at celebrities who never, ever converse with them. Gawd knows I’ve tried with @NathanFillion (although the man seems to be immune to my charms. So far.), but I do like to talk to real people. Virtual real people. You know what I mean.

@idiot 7 through to @idiot99 are not followed back because they are one of the following:-

  • Faith healers
  • Clairvoyants
  • Internet marketers
  • Stock advisors
  • Life coaches
  • Selling toilets

These, unfortunately, make up the majority of the people I don’t follow back.

So far, so negative. What is it that will make me follow back?

I’ll usually follow back if you:-

  • Have similar interests to me and talk to people.
  • Have a hobby or occupation that intrigues me and that I’d like to learn about and talk to people.
  • Have a personal avatar – not just the twitter bird or a bloody egg (recent twitter spammers) and talk to people.
  • Are as mad as a hatter and – guess what – talk to people. Well, why else would I be following @mruku?

So, there you have the rationale behind my twitter follows. How about yours?

*With apologies to music lovers everywhere for using the title of anything Phil Collins was involved in.
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