After a lengthy conversation regarding Twitter and reciprocity, I began considering my own usage regarding Twitter and how it has changed over time. I began going through those that I follow and decided to unfollow a ton of people (this continued the next day because there were so many), but what really took so long wasn’t really the unfollowing but actually adding everyone that I had been following into lists so that I wouldn’t “lose” them. I realize now that as I say this, I’ve basically taken the same approach that I have to BACN (or e-mail that I want, just not right now), because at one point in time I had desired to hear what that person had to say but over time I really had just been ignoring there tweets and moving on to those that I care about anyway, so why not shove them into a corner…
So as I began the process of unfollowing and adding to lists I realized that this isn’t going to be a perfect system but nonetheless one that is necessary for the time being. I didn’t really follow any of the other approaches at unfollowing like JustUnFollow, or others that came before this. Near as I can tell, the only thing that I will lose is for those that I previously was following to DM me. Most of my usage happens at work, other than that I catch replies through my phone and the occasional scroll through as well on the phone. But I believe that now there is more engagement needed I could see access increase at home as well being that now I would be going to Twitter not just to see what was going on but now since I have to actively switch through lists, I find myself thinking about going to Twitter so that I may find out more about a particular subject or group (naming the lists appropriately to fill those buckets).
All of that being said I found myself considering ways in which Twitter could be improved through facilitation of what I’ve laid out here (the adding to lists to find out about specific topics).
The first deals not with the topic thing but instead with the realization that many people are receiving too much noise by following too many people.
- Follow on a trial basis: Allow the option to follow for on a set period of time, after which the person is unfollowed and added to a private list
And here are a few on how lists could work better
- I considered user curated lists but I haven’t even seen anyone using them on Facebook yet so…
- Integration with a service list WeFollow that allows you to assign yourself specific tags, so that users won’t be forced to create the list to add you to (UPDATE: Turns out that Twitter has begun doing this, albeit sneakily)
- More simple interface for lists, the thought here would be to present the user with those the follow (specifically if it could be more apparent that specific followee’s aren’t associated with a list.