How Not To Twitter: The Hall Of Shame

Filed in Twitter by on October 8, 2009 0 Comments


There Are Reasons Why You Should Not Abuse Twitter

Remember you are building a digital legacy

Never forget that everything we do online is being preserved and archived – FOREVER. Your great great grandchildren will be able to search and view your digital footprint.

You can fool all of the people some of the time

At the end of the day your good name is all you have. You can certainly fool some people and make short term gains from abusing Twitter. In the end you will lose.

What Makes A Bad Twitter Citizen

Big mistake: Don’t use auto DMs

An auto DM is an automatic direct message sent to another Twitter user when they begin following you. If you haven’t experienced an auto direct message yet – follow some more people and you soon will.

People get very tired of the “Let me show you what  I can do for you” DM’s. Just prove it . If you do decide to put out an automatic direct message, make it about your followers, ask them to tell you about themselves and how you look forward to following and learning from them.

More things to avoid:

  • Don’t buy Twitter followers
  • Don’t Curse flood, or SPAM – a quick way to lose followers
  • Don’t try to read every tweet. Just picture Twitter as a rushing river that you dip in and out of.  It’s too hard to try and catch the water.
  • Don’t feel the need to reply to every @mention
  • Don’t bad talk or argue with anyone
  • Don’t talk negatively about your employers, company, being bored at work, etc.
  • Don’t wait for people to find you.
  • Don’t brag, no one likes a pompous tweeter, if you do want to promote an accomplishment, be humble.
  • If you choose to install the Twitter application on Facebook – do so with caution. It can cause your Facebook status updates to become flooded.
  • Be careful when signing up for apps that require you to sign on using your Twitter login and password.  This will result in automated tweets/spam.

The Fastest Way Into The Twitter Hall Of Shame


We all hate spam. I bet even spammers hate it when it happens to them. On Twitter Spam is unsolicited direct messages, posts, or @mentions intended to confuse or direct traffic back to the spammers website. Being too direct with offers, a call to action or invitation to visit a website can be viewed by many as spam.

The best way to ensure that you are not spamming Twitter is use the ratio of one call to action tweet for every 20 regular helpful tweets. This is a good rule of thumb that most people respect.


There are people who are eager to abuse others via Twitter. Don’t be among them. If you have a disagreement with someone, take the high road and deal with it civilly. It is okay to post a disagreeing viewpoint, but don’t personally attack another person.

Keep in mind the above tips and be a good Twitter citizen. There are many people who don’t follow basic rules of decency and their reputation suffers because of it. Don’t be one of them.


Joel Mark Witt is the Publisher of Folk Media and author of 21 Days To Twitter Leadership. He is a producer, author, and speaker who consults with businesses and nonprofits on how to use social media in marketing and communications. Get more from Joel on Twitter.


Get the book “21 Days To Twitter Leadership” The Step-By-Step Guide On How To Twitter, Get Twitter Followers And Position Yourself As The Leader In Your Industry In Less Than 10 Minutes Per Day.

*Photo By Mr Squee

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