Why I cut 3,119 Non-Followers on Twitter and Feel the Better For It

Jan 6, 2011 by

As you may recall, there was a post here on DaddyClaxton.com 371 or so days ago was entitled: Why I cut 3,300 peeps from my @Twitter account and feel all the better for it.  This year, I only cut 3,119, but it was time for a cleansing of the tweeps who I was following who either weren’t kind enough or who were too important in their own minds to be following me back.  There was a smaller group, like of about 350 or so, whom I cut because they haven’t used Twitter like  since the days of smoke signals. 

It took me about three days again, but this year I had help.  I used a couple of UnFollow Twitter sites.  And using Firefox and a plug in that lets me check boxes on pages where the Twitter API no longer will allow programmers to build it into a page, I zapped roughly 1,500 peeps a day, by the categories mentioned above.  The site I used for the purging was ManageFilter and I have to say, it worked really, really easy.  Of course, I didn’t cut everyone it recommended, but it did clear a lot of fog.  Because really, who wants to get a bunch tweets from someone you can’t really carry on a conversation with?

I used ManageFilter most of all because it didn’t cost me anything.  I began with another site, Untweeps.com, and although they were kind enough to tell me of the Firefox plug-in Check-Fox, I couldn’t figure out how to use it.   It’s sort of tricky, but it goes like this.

On a Mac, you hit Control+A at the same time you’re right clicking on your mouse. (I think it’s the same for a PC, but if you have a PC, you’re probably more worried about if it’s going to work in 10 minutes than the number of Twitter followers who aren’t following you.) This works on pages where there are check boxes for miles and you don’t have the patience or the extra hour or so of time to click down through say, 1,500 boxes. Because I didn’t know that Untweeps.com, would only cut 500 non-followers at a time, I wasted the time to highlight the 1,500 I wanted to get rid of, only to click delete and for it to tell me it had a limit.  So, I wasted about an hour and a half time, total, and largely decided I was not happy.  I then downloaded the Check-Fox add on for Firefox, logged back into Untweeps.com to use it, and then it said my three FREE attempts were all used up and I could pay $1.37 or some crazy-assed amount to use it for three days.  I sent Untweeps.com‘s developer a Tweet saying how disappointed I was.  His response was to get the Check-Fox add on.  I decided for the time I’d already invested with them, there was no way I was going to pay $1.37.

Twitter 2011

Like last year, I want to commend Twitter for how it’s really worked to clean up the spammers and those tramps trying to sell sex sites.

But I also have to say that I’m not real crazy about their new layout.  It’s frustrated me, and maybe that’s more so because I’m now 45, but here’ what I did last night that I didn’t want to do.

I sent a DM to someone I didn’t want to send a DM to.  I clicked in the messages portion I guess at the top center of the new Twitter screen and sent them a message.  Well, I was so tired when I sent it, and frustrated that I was having to use new Twitter that I didn’t realize until this morning that I’d sent the DM.  

So, for those of you out there who might be struggling with the new Twitter to figure out how to send a DM to someone, you click the MESSAGE space at the top.  Now the screen it takes you to to me feels like it’s a Timeline screen, and that’s where I made my error.

So, person who got a DM from me last night asking why you’ve not been on Twitter the past few days, I didn’t mean to do that, and I’m glad you replied this morning to one of my normal tweets to you.  Like I promised when you began following me, I plan to continue to be judicial in how I send DMs to you, as the last thing I want to happen, is for you to unfollow me.

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Twitter again proves it’s speed with #Austin plane crash & Joe Stack

Feb 18, 2010 by

Maybe I'm not the first to write this tonight, but I'm going to do it anyways–Twitter proved itself again as a lightning fast news source today.  Period.  Newcrash_193728a-2

I know I got the first tweet from the Austin American Statesman as soon as they posted the Twitpic link to the first photos that came in.  I quickly popped open Tweetdeck and created a new search topic and was in the know the rest of the day–a good five to 10 minutes most often before it was getting to CNN or FOX News. Maybe that doesn't mean a lot to some of you, but to me, a news junkie and a PR pro who has been in the business for almost 23 years, there is nothing like the adrenaline rush of knowing the news and knowing it first.

My "BREAKING" tweets immediately started going out to my Twitter followers simultaneously and instantly I saw multiple retweets. Once the name Joe Stack became known, I, like many others began to scour the corners of the Internet to find out what we could about him.  As soon as the purported suicide note was up, I was looking into WhoIs Lookup data and forwarding that on.  I read the document.  Pulled the source code all the while suspecting a fraud and at the same time thinking there would be no real way to create such a fraud in such short order, particularly with the WhoIs Lookup registered to a Joe Stack in the same area of Texas and way back in 2006.  67116445

As soon as the event happened, Twitter was saturated with photos of those who were at or near the scene of the crime. When I retweeted one post and apparently forgot to list the Tweeter, I got a phone call from the Associated Press in New York because the tweet said, "FBI on Scene: pictures of plane crash from a friend that works across the street (183 @ mopac, austin texas) http://twitpic.com/13yjuc." At 11:03 a.m. CST, which was within about 20 minutes of that post, the AP in New York, had my phone number and was calling to find my purported friend. For you skeptics of the power of Twitter, you need to reread this paragraph.

Ah, but I'm sure there are those out there are going to say, so what?  I saw it on the news tonight and I got all you got without having to be apart of it all.  Maybe so, but what if there had been other planes?  What if I'd had friends or relatives working in that building and I wanted to know how they were?  There are dozens of counters I could give back to you to answer such attempts to discount the shear power of what happened today.

Maybe a small percent of the world's population is actually using Twitter, but those of us who are, are getting our information FAST.  And what we get, we're then able to do some checking of our own to see if what we're hearing, seeing, feeling, etc. is real or not.  And in times of an emergency like today, that was comforting. 

And I'm sure there are those out there saying there was too much unverified information.  Well, I have to tell you, if you were a part of the Twitter stream associated with this event today, if someone posted something that was inaccurate, it may have gotten retweeted a couple of times, but then there was just as quick an effort for the information to be corrected.  I saw one guy post that it was the IRS office about 30 minutes before anyone else ran with it. I think most people stayed away from such until it was verified.   0217stack

That gave me a good feeling about citizen journalism, because it worked today.  Real people fed the news stream and they flooded it in ways that TV and radio stations just can't do anymore without help.  I'm glad to have been a part of such a sophisticated process.  It's light years ahead of the way things were when I was a runner for the Auburn Opelika News back in 1984 and to file a story I had to type it in on a roll of brown paper towels.

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