Changes to Twitter: New Way To Do the @Reply

tonywright_birds02_470x350So Twitter made a pretty big change this week – I thought I’d let you all know. I will also update my tutorials with red type.

The change is in the way @replies are shown. Previously, whenever you would reply to someone, and use @Username, that tweet would go out to ALL of your followers.

The change Twitter made causes the @reply to go only to the person being addressed (obviously) then only to those who can see the other side of the conversation (meaning they are also following the person you’re talking to). So if you @reply to someone’s question or comment, there’s a good chance that only he or she can read it – not everyone.

Personally, I’m disappointed in this change. I liked being able to follow all conversations, even if I could only see one side. I found a lot of interesting people that way.

Of course, there is a way around it. (We always find workarounds, don’t we?) If the “@reply” is NOT the first character in the tweet, it will still go out to all of our followers. So you can always write “To @Username, how’re the Angels doing?” or “Dear @reply, how’re the Cards doing?” or whatever. Some are simply typing an “r” to stand for “reply” so there will be a character in that spot and it will go out to all. Plus, anytime you bury the “@Username” anywhere in the tweet, it will go out to everyone (i.e., “Thx, @gogogirl – you and @kiki are the best!”). Continue reading

Twitter 201

tonywright_birds02_470x3501Hi, all! Now that you’ve hopefully found some helpful tips in my post Twitter 101, and are not so freaked out by followers anymore, you might be ready to move on to Twittering 201. You should be following at least 50 people, and therefore at least 25 people are probably following you (if, that is, you have a decent bio and photo avatar). You now have a Twitter community!

Keep adding to your community by finding more and more people – add at least 5 to 10 a week. Read what they have to say. You don’t have to read every tweet — think of it like tuning in to a radio show for a half hour a day: Just get on Twitter, read what’s going on with “your people” during that half hour, jump in if you feel like it, write to a few folks you like, then log off. Tell your new friends interesting things about your common interests – cool things you’ve read or things you’ve seen. Ask people questions with @replies. People will also continue to find you, and your community will grow. Keep watching how people interact to get the lingo down pat.

Now here are some fun things to do as a “second level”:

1.    Add your blog stream. If you have a blog, you can have your blog posts upload to Twitter automatically.  Do this at (I have to admit, I had help with this from my company’s SEO guy, so I can only answer the simplest of questions on this – like the name of the site. …) Once you feed your blog into Twitter, the title of each post will go up within a half hour of posting. (I get a lot of clicks to my blog this way.) Continue reading

You’re Being Followed …

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

Twitter 101

tonywright_birds02_470x3501I’ve been giving tiny tutorials to friends and coworkers on Twitter, so thought I’d share with my blogging friends, too. I have to admit, I’m liking it more and more.

If you’re interested in giving it a “twhirl,” here are some first steps:

Set up Your Account

1. Log in to and select a user name.

2. Update your profile data right away. Your profile tells people about you, and helps them determine whether to follow you or not. If you don’t want a lot of people to follow you (some don’t — some would rather “listen” on Twitter than “talk”), then don’t put much info. If you do want a lot of people to follow you, however (if you want to make new friends regarding your interests, or you have something to promote), then put a lot of info. The more info you provide, the more people you will connect with.

3. Write a bio that shows what you want out of Twitter. If you want to make friends who have a similar interest (say, tiki culture or photography) and you want to find out more about events/ideas/tips/etc. about those things, let people know by putting “devoted tiki fan” or something in your bio. If you want to meet other people in your region, say where you live. If you want to connect with people over books, mention that you love to read. Your bio is what people see when they’re deciding to connect with you, so they’ll choose people with whom they feel they can share info. A good way to write a bio for Twitter is to make a list of people you want to meet and construct your own bio that expresses your desire to meet people involved in those things.

4. Put in a photo or avatar quickly. People w/out an avatar are considered total newbies, so don’t call attention to yourself that way for spammers, etc. If you don’t have a photo of yourself, you can use a photo of your main interest (soccer ball, glasses, etc.). In Twitter’s spirit of “transparency,” however, a photo of yourself is preferred.  Continue reading

Everyone’s A-Twitter About Twitter…

So … Twitter … Do you like it? Love it? Hate it?


 I got on it for work recently, first as myself (mizwrite), but now I “tweet” for my company most days of the week under LifeScript.


Anyway, Twitter is kind of a strange animal – it’s sort of a cross between IM-ing and a chat room (or like sending Facebook status updates constantly, only to a roomful of strangers rather than to your closest friends). It’s very fast, and very live (especially if you’re following hundreds – or, in LifeScript’s case, even thousands – of conversations). You can “follow” the conversations of anyone you like, and even “group” them to follow certain streams at a time.


Here are some things you can do with Twitter:


Follow famous people: Katie Couric, Maria Shriver, Gov. Arnold Swartzenegger, Tina Fey, Rainn Wilson (Dwight from “The Office”), Ashton Kutcher, Jane Fonda, Tyler Florence, Shaq, Jimmy Fallon, etc. are all on there, chatting about their day and where they’re eating for lunch. You can follow any and all. Necessary to your life? No. Fun? Absolutely. Continue reading

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...