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Why and How this Geek Girl Uses Twitter

04 · 28 · 09

by @FantasyDreamer

twitter bird

I’ve seen a lot of articles and blog posts on how people should use Twitter but most of them are geared towards those trying to market themselves towards monetary means and how to get as many followers as you possible get. I would like to talk about how and why I use Twitter because it has nothing to do with those two common goals.

When I first heard of Twitter is was about year ago but I didn’t jump on the band wagon at the time. It wasn’t until September 2008, that I started using Twitter for work because they wanted the web development group to test our toes in the Twitter waters before the marketing folks did. They wanted us to share the in and outs of what we found. To be honest, I didn’t really like it, I thought it was boring. This was because I wasn’t really using it like I should and I was following the wrong people. On top of that, my boss and the marketing department was following me on Twitter, so this made me worried about saying something I shouldn’t and/or be a bad reflection on the company, etc. Then in January of this year, I had an epiphany. It occurred to me to create another account for myself that didn’t have anything to do with work. Now, the fun begins.

At first, I just followed authors of the books that I enjoyed and then a few followed me back. This made me overjoyed, for obvious reasons. Then I started following the book bloggers and this is where I find out that quite a few of them are actually in the technical field like me. So this dominoes over to me hooking up with technical people of like interests in my field. That’s how I discovered the founder of this blog @geekgirls.

My Twitter following and who I follow is a mixture of a lot of different interests. Because of this I am now really enjoying Twitter now, where I am finding and sharing with people with my many interests. As you can see I’m not on Twitter for monetary means nor am I there for as many followers as I can get.

  • Some people I’ve noticed are on Twitter to meet people plus get as many followers as they can. I’m cool with that and have no problem following these people as long as they tweet things I’m interested in. Here is my list of the traits of Twitters who I will not follow on Twitter:
     
  • All tweets have to do with getting more followers. I don’t want my Twitter feed full of people begging for followers and not have anything of value to say besides getting more followers.
     
  • The avatar is a picture of a couple; their hair and clothing are perfect and smiling at me. I’ve seen a lot these lately. They creep me out, reminds me of the Stepford Wives. Too perfect. I know this has no fidelity besides my own bias.
     
  • No bio. Speaks for itself.
     
  • For the most part, using the default Twitter avatar equals no follow. The exceptions, I can tell they are sight impaired or they are someone I know.
     
  • The person’s tweets are about earning an extraordinaire about of money in a short time or telling me how I buy a laptop next to nothing.
     
  • No tweets at all.
     
  • Their tweets don’t have anything to do with what I like to see in my Twitter feed. 

Who will I follow

  • Plain and simple: Those with tweets of value to me or can just make me laugh.

What tools do I use to manage Twitter? 

  • TweetDeck: I group people into groups by interest, create searches, has a ton of functionality built-in to it. The groups function is the only reason I use this not just the Twitter’s Web Interface. By grouping I can see tweets in their area of interests.
     
  • Firefox with Twitter‘s Web Interface, Greasemonkey and Troys Twitter Script: Same functionality as TweetDeck with the exception of groups. I found Troys Twitter Script through @g33kgurrl.
     
  • Twitterfeed: To publish blog posts from my blog.
     
  • last.fm: To post songs of interest to Twitter.
     
  • Google Reader + Twitter: This is a Greasemonkey script that will put a Twitter link at the bottom of the post you are reading. If I decide what I’m reading is worth sharing, I can tweet it from my reader. 

The how and why I use Twitter will continue to evolve over time. Twitter has also made this geek girl more sociable. If you want to follow me or just check out my tweets, look me up @FantasyDreamer.

So, my question to you is how and why do you use Twitter? If you are not using Twitter, why not?

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7 comments

  1. I am one of your followers and I have to agree with every thing.
    I did for a while follow every one who followed me but I realize thats a big no no as no I have to start unfollowing people that do not interest me and it is turning out to be a lot of work.

    I heard about twitter from namecheap as they sent an email out about it and that it could be used to advertise your site. I did not sign up at the time but then a friend of mine started using it and so I signed up to follow him and I slowly gained followers and followed more people.
    I then met @geekgirls and started getting into it full time and met a lot of wonderfull people through her. Including the writer of this article, whome I enjoy talking to.

    Thanks

    Amy (@bunnykins2)


    • I joined Twitter for the same reason Bunny did “have friends that are on it” and like Bunny I have learned to be careful of who I add *sigh* lots of junk to look out for.


  2. Twitter can be fun & productive with the added plus of meeting new online friends – we are case in point.

    I’ve enjoyed tweeting with you on Twitter and all of the other Geek Girls. 🙂


  3. I started using twitter because some of the creators of webcomics I read would put special offers in their tweets only. Also that is where they were making some announcements about their comics. Once I signed up for twitter which was about a two months ago I received some emails that some of these marketing types were following me. I decided to follow a couple of them since they seemed to twitter about other things than marketing. Since then I have been able to find some tech type people to follow also.

    Right now I am in a help desk position and wanting to start training for a DBA position.


    • I’ve used Twitter to watch for marketing promos also. There are more & more companies and individuals (especially bloggers) who post their latest contest or campaign on Twitter. I’ve also found out about book releases or software I wasn’t aware. Kinda neat seeing it in real-time.

      Don’t you love meeting people you can tweet with!?!

      Good Luck in your DBA training!


  4. I absolutely didn’t get into Twitter for the ways normal people seem to. I noticed one day that a blog I read had a Twitter and I checked out the site. I’ve been dabbling in blogs and online journal since I was very young and ultimately stopped because after writing every day for a year, I was so bored with myself. When I stopped, I found myself forgetting all of the things I’d been doing in my life because I didn’t write about it.
    And Twitter took the place of that. I send a text to Twitter and I can go back and read about what I was doing. And I don’t forget the things that are important to me.
    Now I use it for the same thing, but also to follow people who interest me and talk to some people I end up meeting.
    I really love Twitter and it’s the perfect blog/networking tool for me.


    • That’s a use I hadn’t thought. Very creative, kinda like your own micro-blog. Good idea.



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