8 Great Tips for Twitter Newbies
- -Twitter is an open public network. It’s not Facebook. Unless you protect your tweets, they’re all visible to everyone else. It’s OK, though: Twitter is all about sharing information
- -Twitter has some strange jargon. The company is well aware of this, so they’ve created an official glossary. Refer to it often; it’ll save your bacon more than once. And look up what a hashtag is, definitely.
- -You can change your username at any time to anything available. There’s no penalty. So if you don’t like it, then change it. The shorter your username the better, though.
- -Lurking is a good thing. It’s good practice until you get into the swing of things, and you can do it forever if you want to. Since Twitter is an open network, you don’t have to say anything to tap into it. Still, you can improve that network if you get involved and say your piece.
- -The longest tweet possible is 140 characters. You should leave 20 characters free, though, so that people can retweet your full post. Sharing a link? Shorten it first. Use Twitter’s new tool, try bit.ly or any of of the other quality offerings.
- -Direct messages are a way for one user to privately message another. You can only send one to someone if they are following you. If someone is harassing you via direct message, unfollow them.
- -You don’t have to follow anyone you don’t want to. You don’t have to follow anyone.
- -Starting a tweet with @username makes a reply. The only people that will see it are you, the person you replied to and others that might be following both of you, though you will see it in Twitter search and on your profile page. Now, if you use an @username in any other place, you get a mention. Everyone that’s following you will see that.
- -Looking for people you know on Twitter? Use Google! Type in “Twitter firstname lastname,” and if the person you want has at least a slightly unusual name they should be near the top of that list.
- -Twitter offers a better experience when used with a client. Try starting with the official apps which are available for all major platforms. Then try something else if those don’t work for you.
- -You can use that search box to look for anything on Twitter. Use it liberally.
- -On signing up for Twitter, you’ll start getting a lot of strange emails. Go to Twitter > Settings > Notifications to deal with those.
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