Peter VanRysdam / Digital Strategy / December 8th, 2009

An Open Letter to My Future Twitter Followers

Dear Future Potential Twitter Followers, First off, thanks for choosing to follow me! I try to keep my tweets on point about Web development, goings-on at our company, and a few things about my family on the weekends or evenings. I hope you find the links I provide helpful. I’ve been getting a bunch of what I can only assume are automatic emails recently after following people. To clarify my intentions, here are a few things from recent automated personal (oxymoron, I know) messages that I’m *not* interested in, with specific comments in Bold:

  1. Do you want to know an easy ‘paint by numbers’ approach to earning an extra $3000 per month:(link) – Did you read my profile? I already have a job.
  2. {Hi Tweet one fun fact about you and I will tweet one fun fact about me. | I think I saw you on FaceBook? I am (link) | Would you follow me on FaceBook? (link) – Clearly this is canned. I mean nobody uses those vertical lines to divide sentences in normal conversation. I don’t even have that on my keyboard. How did you do that? Maybe I’ll connect with you on Facebook and ask!
  3. Hey thanks for following, we will do our very best to keep you informed and entertained. If you are interested in us you can find out more about us at (link) – Interesting that you refer to yourself as us, even though your profile is clearly an individual. Either you are a company masking as an individual or your have multiple personality disorder.
  4. Great meeting you. Let’s talk about network marketing – We’ve met?
  5. Nice to meet you! Tell me about your business opportunities if you have them, but it’s OK if you don’t. Thanks for the follow! See you soon. – Thank goodness that’s not required! I’m off the hook!
  6. Thanks. New to Twitter? Learn how to use Twitter & make $500.00 or more every day. 6 Free Videos. Check my review: (link) – Just check out my profile to see I’m not new to twitter. I was there pre-spam.
  7. Hi! many thanks for folloing me ! I look forward for your tweets and will follow You! – And here’s the problem…I followed you only because you followed me. So that doesn’t make any sense.
  8. Take a Look at this Warrior Forum Post on an Article Marketing Success Story Before is Closes (link) – At least spell check your canned responses!
  9. Thanks for the follow! If you would like to put your internet marketing on steroids visit (link) – I remember from science class in middle school what steroids can do to you…no thanks!

I propose twitter modifies it’s verbiage. The term “follower” is not really accurate. Most people only follow someone for the follow back, in order to build up a percieved value in their vast network of other people that aren’t actually listening to them either. I liken most twitterers nowadays to people in a room with headphones on and their eyes closed yelling at the top of their voices about their new multi-level marketing venture. But the problem is nobody is listening to them! I say we call them “robot army” or “people who want you to think they’re listening to you.” I setup one of those auto-follow tools to follow the people back that follow me. When I did so, I figured that people (clients, others in my industry, etc) who wanted to hear what I had to say would be interesting to me. But now I found myself unfollowing anyone who sends back a canned “thanks” direct message. It’s about social networking, not robot networking. And I wonder why my follow count isn’t going up. Here’s why…

A sampling of my followers
A sampling of my twitter followers.                                                          

When those nice robot people follow you, it’s not really them following you. You see, for $39.95, you too can have a program that blindly follows thousands based on a keyword search of their profile. But here’s the kicker: If you don’t reciprocate the follow within a given time period, they unfollow you. Or at least their program does. They aren’t really doing anything but setting up tweets to send out at random intervals to look like they have a pulse. So, potential followers, here are some things to consider when following me:

  1. Be a person. I don’t follow logos.
  2. Don’t send me a canned thank you when neither of us did anything. Thank your program that followed me or my program that followed you back.
  3. We just met…don’t send me a link to join the bottom of your pyramid. Buy me dinner first at least!

I know I’m coming off as jaded. And the sad thing is if you’re reading this, it doesn’t apply to you. Because you are a person (except for the comment spam robots…hi!). If only the robotweeters would read this. Anyhow, I look forward from deleting you from the list of people I follow, since you’re not a person. Yours Truly, Peter VanRysdam
www.twitter.com/Peter352

  • Mary Furino

    Wow. That’s a rant if I’ve ever seen one. I couldn’t agree more. Maybe my private tweeting wasn’t so bad after all?

  • Matt VR

    Bubo! That would get me to start using Twitter if he became their mascot!