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Knowing the right and wrong way to conduct oneself on Twitter can be difficult, and so I present to you a guide to proper Twitter etiquette, so that you can be a true gentleman or lady of the Twittersphere. Each etiquette tip is, aptly, in tweet format.
I actually did send all these out in tweets earlier this week, and #TwitterEtiquette ended up trending in South Africa. Which, since I don’t have a day job and spend every waking hour on Twitter, is the equivalent of you getting a raise or promotion at work. Yay me!
1. Don’t beg to be followed, a better idea is to threaten to harm a kitten if people don’t follow you back. #TwitterEtiquette
Various people responded, predictably, by threatening to harm a kitten if I didn’t follow them back.
2. When you RT every single compliment that you get, everybody thinks you’re awesome #TwitterEtiquette.
Some of the biggest celebrities in the world do this and they still seem to have millions of followers. But that doesn’t make it right.
3. It’s always a good idea to hurl abuse at celebrities, especially if you have 20 followers or less #TwitterEtiquette.
Someone called @roxy_omar responded to this by saying ‘shut the f*ck up’, which I thought was funny, except for the fact that she has almost a hundred followers and I’m not a real celebrity yet.
4. Jesus doesn’t have a Twitter account, but don’t let that stop you from constantly tweeting about how much you love him #TwitterEtiquette.
Various people responded to this by pointing out that Jesus does, indeed, have multiple Twitter accounts, notably @Jesus_M_Christ, @jesus and @Jesus_Christ. At the time of writing this, though, none of them are ‘verified’.
5. People really learn and grow from you pointing out the inaccuracies in their tweet. #TwitterEtiquette
They really don’t. But they do think you’re an annoying prick.
6. Going through a depressing break-up? Why not live tweet it for the amusement of your followers? #TwitterEtiquette
Sometimes people I follow do this, and as much as I want to unfollow them I don’t, because they seem close to suicide, and I wouldn’t want to do anything that has even a slight chance of pushing them over the edge.
7. If you see someone tweet something clever, copy and paste it so everyone thinks you thought of it! #TwitterEtiquette
When I did a search for the hashtag #TwitterEtiquette I noticed that various people had taken this tweet, copied it and pasted it so everyone would think they thought of it. Which, I suppose, is nobody’s fault but my own.
8. It’s rude not to tweet ‘good morning’ every time you wake up & ‘good night’ every time you go to sleep. #TwitterEtiquette
It’s even worse when people you follow who live in other countries do this. They will tweet “Good morning, all”, and then I have to resist the temptation to respond “But it’s 3:15pm in South Africa!”.
9. Ladies, you’ll get more followers if you’re semi-naked in your avi. But feel free to complain when douchebags harass you. #TwitterEtiquette
I have also noticed several women with famous super-hot models or Hollywood stars as their avi, as I mentioned in last week’s column, and it seems that they are trying to convince their followers that they are hot by association. There are also various men with famous super-hot models or Hollywood stars, as well as boobs and bums, as their avi. Do not let them trick you into following them.
10. DO NOT under any circumstances tweet the word f*ck. And especially not the word c*nt. #TwitterEtiquette
This did not get many RTs, for obvious reasons. But in my head right now I am imagining that lots of people chuckled quietly to themselves.
11. I follow a certain person who always subtweets. I wish that person would stop because subtweeting is lame. #TwitterEtiquette
Wow, I was amazed at how many people missed the sarcasm here completely. Some responses included:
@XO_Junkie: The irony »»» RT @DeepFriedMan: I follow a certain person who always subtweets. I wish that person would stop because subtweeting is lame.
Yes, the irony.
@Hue_Music: Isn’t what your doing subtweeting as well?
Yes, well spotted. And it’s ‘you’re’.
@okuhle_m it sounds, suspiciously, like you just subtweeted THEM now. Lol
‘Ok, you put ‘Lol’ at the end so I’ll let you off.