About that Twitter thing…

I signed up for Twitter way early in 2006 (check my RSS feed, it shows a relatively small number) but only started really using it at SXSW 2007 in Austin, TX.

It was initially meant as an experiment to just give it a try, see how it works and then decide if I really needed it. Well, that experiment has lasted for almost two years now (we know it’s addictive).

Twitter has grown tremendously over the past two years and so has my usage. There are at least seven accounts I use on a regular basis (one personal, a few various business and product ones, a couple of community events etc.).

There’s definitely been a lot of cool stuff to see and I still enjoy being amidst this new thing (micro-blogging, whatever) — except for one big problem: it’s too distracting and it costs too much time.

It’s not so bad with the smaller accounts that have up to a couple hundred followers/following, lower posting frequency (less than daily) and are focused around one specific niche topic.

But my personal Twitter stream has become a real drag. Too much noise. Too little signal. And as much as I appreciate that Twitter is stable after the problems we saw last year, the fact that there’s been feature standstill doesn’t help much either: no groups, no ability to fine tune tweet volume, no easy way to manage your followers and followed — pretty much all the basics needed to help me manage are still missing. I’m sure there’s an application out there somewhere that does some of that but seriously, who has the time to go on that quest?

Anyway, time to clear out some of the brush (sorry to un-follow you). And probably step away from it entirely for a while and see if the world still turns.

3 Responses to “About that Twitter thing…”

  1. Adriel Hampton Says:

    Good self-analysis. If it is not helping you achieve your goals, and not going according to plan, or if there was no plan and you see this time suck, by all means, stop twittering! The world WILL go one. Good luck!

  2. Tim Says:

    Well, there’s still a lot of cool things you can do on Twitter. Just the personal account had gotten a bit too busy lately. I already unfollowed about 50 or so folks with a combined lifetime tweet count of 100,000+ — with the majority coming on over the last year, that’s about 200 tweets per day from that group alone. Feels better already. ;-)

  3. Tim Says:

    Update:

    Already much happier with the modifications I made:

    I unfollowed a bunch of folks (with a combined lifetime tweet count of way over 100,000 tweets, so that eliminated 5-10 pages of Tweets I was receiving daily).

    I’ve increased the number of keywords/hashtags I’m following via Twitter search (RSS).

    I’ve also reverted to posting less and only posting stuff that answers the original question: “What are you doing?”

    Good start, I think next weekend I’ll unsubscribe from another 100 or so people. ;-)

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