Trying to Learn Twitter: An Ongoing Experience


I can’t currently screenshot and crop images, so I’ll just give the text of the tweet by Hannah Whitten:

“Being a Creative Career Person on the internet is a delicate dance of wanting your platform to grow because that’s how you get to share more art and also being terrified of it because there are a LOT of people just looking for a reason to be an asshole.”

(Alternatively, I did recently retweet this tweet if you want to scroll down my twitter feed to find it.)

The other tweets underneath it mostly consist of people agreeing. There is some discussion of parasocial relationships, which I honestly had to Google. And, yeah, I am learning what it feels like to try to grow an online platform. This tweet puts a lot of those feelings into words. Especially considering some of the personal things I’ve been through in the past.

But I think I’m getting better at Twitter. For example, I’m learning more of the etiquette. It seems that, if someone retweets my pinned tweet, then they expect me to retweet their pinned tweet. I’m sure this isn’t always the case, but people do seem to expect it. Following someone who follows you is encouraged (not required), but people frequently unfollow people after getting that follow back. Sure, it’s not everyone. But it is enough for me to see people complaining about it and combing through their lists.

I am also confirming a few suspicions. Yes, there is a lot of sh*tposting. And misinformation. But there’s also a vibrant community. And, well, I am one among many. And I mean MANY. It’s not just that there is a vibrant writing community on Twitter. There are a lot of us floundering around. We’re trying to build a following, get reviews, make sales, build a readership, actually connect with people, advertise without it looking like we’re advertising, learn the new “tricks,” feel like we’re connecting with people, etc.

I’ve now been on the platform for about a year and I only have around 115 followers. But I’m getting there.

One Reply to “Trying to Learn Twitter: An Ongoing Experience”

  1. Update: 171 followers! And two new lessons I can add to my observations. First, I’ve had to comb through my followers due to some . . . I’m going to word that as weird interactions. I’ve set a date to comb through them again. Any profile that looks suspicious (like a private account with a two word bio) is getting blocked. Past experience from other places online says that I need to be ruthless. The other lesson? Misunderstandings abound. Non-absolutes are absolutes, and vice versa. Being on the internet is rough sometimes.

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