I've been trying to write about social media but I've been having hard time because I have a little rant that has been getting in the way.
You see, I'm mad at Twitter. Well not really. Anymore anyway.
Actually the truth of the matter was I could not figure out why people even enjoyed twitter. You see I was tweeting out into cyberland and for the majority of the time I received almost no tweet backs. I heard about people having conversations with people in real time but I couldn't figure out how it worked. It seemed like you had to know a person was on line and then magically you could talk to each other but how the heck did you talk to strangers and how did multiple people participate in the chats?
I tried out the hash tag topics I was interested but no one ever responded to me unless I sent a message to them directly. When ever I did that it worked great. People were always nice but all in all the "great fun" everyone seemed to be having with it alluded me.
I did find some specific uses for the service because I sent links directly to people I thought might be interested in things I saw in other tweets. I re-tweeted other peoples stuff and would send messages directly to people with my blog links. No one seemed to mind and I actually garnered several guest bloggers and found a few new followers along the way but unknowingly I had also violated a twitter policy to NOT Tweet the same things repeatedly.
If I got a good response it seemed only logical to try it again. Twitter wasn't that useful or fun but I thought I was doing the best I could with it.
Then I attended Bloggy Boot Camp and learned that it was against Twitter policies to re-send the same/similar tweets over and over and that "for the good of the overall user experience" tweeters who did that would be banned from having their tweets being available in twitter searches. This meant that once "banned" my tweets could be seen by my specific followers but no one else!! Suddenly it all made sense!!
The annoying thing about this ban is that Twitter never told me I had violated any tweeting algorithm I was just taken out of the tweet stream. Since it happened when I just began playing around with the service, and I really had NO IDEA what I was doing I never knew that my experience was different then any one else's. I just thought my tweets were just not that interesting and somehow the other 10 billion people who tweeted about their breakfast food (read #bacon here! lol)were more social media savvy then I was and perhaps SOMEDAY I would find the time to figure out the big secret.
Once I heard that tweets could be taken out of the stream I realized that it was very possible that had happened to mine! I tested a few hash tag comments and didn't see my tweets when I looked at the stream conversation. I had always assumed that my own tweets just didn't show up in my version of the stream NOT that they weren't there at all. I also started a new twitter account (EverydayBacon of course!)to test my tweets from both accounts and contacted Twitter Help as soon as I confirmed my suspicions.
I explained my novice mistake, apologized and asked that my appearance in the big conversational stream be restored. Within hours they responded and restored my full tweeting privileges. I am now officially a part of the twitter universe. I can participate in live conversations and people can see my tweets. I can tweet about bacon or parenting or Mad Men or anything that strikes my fancy and there are people out there who can finally hear me.
And isn't that what community is all about? We all want to hear and be heard.
With that said I have to get back to my #MadMen obsessed friends now... a new episode is airing tonight and I have lots to say.
How about you? What do you want to hear and be heard on tonight?
Next Post: The community wrap up... followed by an early arrival of Gratitude week!