A Twittering (and Related Social Platforms) Update Part 1 – Followers

[Note: This is a repub of a post originally written in Aug 2012 on the version of this blog that died. We’re getting lots of requests for it so we’re republishing it here. Enjoy!]

I’ve written about my Twitter experiences and philosophy in A Twitter Social Contract, They’re Following Me! (More on Twitter) and They’re Still Following Me! And Now There’s More of Them! (A Twitter Update). It’s been a while and, as Twitter and several other social platforms have been part of several sociality experiments NextStage has conducted recently, it’s time for an update.

This post is the first in a blog-arc (some people prefer the term series) of six separate posts. These posts will cover

  1. Followers
  2. Watches
  3. “You don’t follow anybody”
  4. Twitter v LinkedIn v Facebook v FourSquare v Pinterest v …
  5. Private v Public Personae
  6. “You rarely point to someone else’s writing”

Part 4, “Twitter v LinkedIn v Facebook v FourSquare v Pinterest v …”, is where the real meat is, we thinks. The other five deal with issues that came up or questions we were asked during the research. I’ll backfill the links as the separate posts are published. Also, Part 4 may appear on TriQuatroTriteCale as it’s more researchy than the rest and, as I’m bouncing around traveling this month, why shouldn’t my posts do the same?

We start with

Followers

As I write this (started it the end of June 2012) I have 374 followers. Yesterday, when I was writing the rough draft of this post, I had 375. I lost one due to death or illness, most definitely. It couldn’t be due to — as I often tell people — the fact that I’m dull and boring.

Do you want more followers?

Well…sure…I mean…maybe…why?…Where would they all sit?…And then there’s the dinner arrangements…And you know nobody wants to sit across from Sturpa…

Anyway, 374 (and as I publish this on 7 Aug 2012, 377!!!) [and now in 2016, I’m overflowing with 408! Stand back, folks, she’s going to blow!]! A better question (to me) is “How did I get that many?”

I hope following me is worth it to those 377 (obviously it wasn’t to #375 at the time). I asked several people why they follow me and most responses can be summed up to either “A lot of us follow you because, we feel if we don’t, we’ll miss out on something terribly important.” or “I don’t know why I’m following you so I did a little digging and found…” followed by a data trail of someone else pointing to something I’d written that my follower found interesting at some point in time and they simply haven’t dropped me. (It’s nice to know my followers are so black or white, though, don’t you think?)

To the latter I sometimes follow up with “Do you pay a lot of attention to Twitter?” — No.

My challenge with all such laudanums is that what I do that I find exciting others don’t. Example: Over a year ago we had some research indicating what print media could do to remain a) advertising revenue based, b) vital and c) increase its dwindling audience. This was incredible stuff to me. The research was neat and clean and the findings to date were brilliant (and another researcher’s, not mine).

Yet nobody was particularly interested in that research. Currently that research sits on a shelf waiting for someone to write it up.

I have had a few people write me that they like my MundaneWatches because MundaneWatches provide better insight into me, something I cover in a bit more detail in part 2 of this arc, Watches.

More people respond to Mundane- and Mascot-Watches than anything else I twit. To heck with the research, you play piano? And harpsichord? That’s neat!

(and oh, if you think my tweets are boring and dull, you should hear my piano and harpsichord playing!)

Do you want fewer followers?

Hmm…it’s nice to be liked…but I don’t know most of the people following me…so if they all went away…hmm…wouldn’t that be like it was before I’d even heard of Twitter? or LinkedIn? or …

As with wanting more followers, wanting fewer has to do with what people are following me for.

This leads to the next post in this arc, Watches. More to…umm…follow.


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