Let’s be real, darlings, social media platforms have unspoken communication rules which can make them as incredibly difficult to navigate as high school social circles. Enter the fast-moving world of Twitter, and you’ll be pulled in among the masses and disappear or trolled mercilessly, unless you start treading water like your life depends on it. Given that Twitter has been around for about eight years, there have been a wide variety of articles published on how to best use it—whether that be for networking, staying up-to-date on your favorite causes and people, or just a professional platform to promote your business. Some of them are wicked intimidating and portray it as the method by which you can make or break your career, friendships, marriage, and education. But, you might be like me and have joined out of pure curiosity; and as such tend to just run a wild 140 characters all over without a specific agenda in place. I’m here to give you some practical advice on how to swim victoriously through the Twitterverse and not be the outcast—or the prick—that everybody talks about behind their backs on direct messages (because yes, often Twitter can be like middle school).
Know your purpose on Twitter.
Your purpose on Twitter can be very fluid—just be aware of how you’re presenting yourself and adjust your profile as needed. For example, if you want to be uber-professional then it probably wouldn’t be the best course of action to curse like a sailor and badmouth your boss. If you want to find a spouse or a hookup, then it can also be used for those purposes, if you know where to look. Above all else, if you want, you can use Twitter to learn so much about people, causes, and anything else random—it’s a treasure trove just waiting to be explored!
Of course there are many “tweeps” that seem to just be there to troll, which I hope you won’t resort to…
You can subtweet if you have to (but don’t put #subtweet after the comment).
Subtweeting can be generally defined as a passive-aggressive form of tweeting where you’re criticizing what someone else is saying without directly calling them out. While this might sound quite dastardly, sometimes situations call for a well-timed subtweet that has a bit of a snap to it. But this is only an occasional method of communication, and it can get so stinkin’ annoying after a while if it seems that’s all you do—prepare to see your follower count dwindle.
Don’t tweet-bomb conversations constantly.
You know how people photo-bomb your selfies or group photos? Well, lo and behold, it happens on Twitter quite frequently. You know who I’m referring to—that one person in your feed that constantly enthusiastically enters any conversations you might be having with other people. They usually respond by essentially repeating the opinion someone has already voiced, or they just state several of the words with exclamation points following the statement. For example, if you were discussing “Star Wars” with some fellow enthusiasts, said bomber might enter with—”POD RACES!” What is anyone supposed to say to that? This interruption usually leads to the rapid disintegration of the discussion as the awkwardness overwhelms the situation. If this is a common occurrence then there might be some muttering about it behind DM doors.
Young padawans, be not afraid of the “block” and “report spam” options.
Let me tell you, there are some top notch nasty people out there on the web, and lucky for the us, they all seem to be on Twitter. Ladies, heaven forbid you put a photo of yourself looking gorgeous (as usual) as your avitar! There are the people that send nice complements your way, and then there are those that feel the need to comment on what they would do to you because you are just so pretty. Unfortunately, if you are active on Twitter you will eventually encounter these individuals. Please, under no circumstances, follow said individuals back and allow them to infiltrate your DM box, because when they are drunk it only gets worse. INSTEAD, hit those “block” and “report spam” buttons with great alacrity, and waltz away without worrying about their wounded pride.
Get over the fact that people may comb back through your tweets and pictures and retweet or comment on them.
Some people get their panties all in a twist when someone retweets, stars, or comments on a tweet they posted weeks, months, or years ago. But y’all, this is a public area where, unless you delete all your tweets or your account, people can look through your shiz and it’s acceptable. So what if they’re semi-stalking you? As long as they’re not being creepy then don’t worry about it. If it really bothers you, then make your account private. The end.
Don’t use your full name, unless you want your entire family, employers, and long-lost friends to be able to find you in one fell swoop via Google.
Also, don’t link all of your accounts because one can lead right to another. For example, if your family is on Facebook and you don’t want them to see your Twitter, then don’t put the two together on ANY site. That way if you very very rarely need to be a douchecanoe you won’t be disowned or fired for it.
When you get drunk, attempt to not word-vomit all over Twitter.
Let your friends take your phone away if you start getting a little too friendly with that margarita. Twitter moves really fast, and a tipsy/drunk individual can wreak a lot of havoc on the platform in a very short amount of time. You can go back the next morning and delete the tweets, but people saw them and you can’t erase that. Sometimes it’s just plain hilarious to see the progression, but other times it can get offensive or embarrassing. Be careful, even though we all know that whatever you said when drunk is probably true…
Last, but not least, follow Literally, Darling on Twitter @litdarling. We love to hear from and interact with our readers!
What unspoken rules have you found to be true on Twitter? Tweet us @litdarling!
Photo credit to Funny Junk