Now that you’ve hopefully read my post Twitter 101 and are starting to follow some fun people (please send comments and tell me who you found!), you are probably getting some followers back. This freaks a lot of people out. So, before we move on to Twitter 201, I thought I’d throw out a few notes on how “following” works:
1. First, do not let the word “follow” freak you out. Twitter should have named this something else because “Joe is now following you on Twitter …” has a terribly predatory sound. Especially to women. (Especially when accompanied by an avatar with a guy with barbells who looks like he could snap your neck in two.) But do not let the term “follow” intimidate you. Think of it as “Joe wants to network with you.” Because that’s what it is. People “follow” you because they perceive you to be someone they can network with.
2. Many people have “auto-follow” set up. This is why you get immediate follows. Don’t freak out. Auto-follow means the person doesn’t even look at who they’re following, they just follow anyone who follows them. This is fine. Relax.
3. It’s considered “polite” to follow anyone who is following you. You don’t have to, of course. If you think their tweets are going to be weird or annoying, then don’t follow. But the truth is, you never know who is going to send the tweet that could be of vast interest to you. For this reason, I follow tons of people. I’m always surprised by the interesting things various people say. Continue reading