What the hell?! After arguing why I shouldn’t use Twitter, you decide to write an article about how I can solve some problems with Twitter? Does this moment of glory deserve enshrinement in the FailBlog website?
Say what you want about Twitter, but it is an revolutionary tool for communicating with people across the world and gaining access to information at an unbelievable speed. Thus, it’s no secret that I am a Twitter-addict. The only things stopping me from tweeting are a lack of wifi and seeing Tiger Woods hit a golf ball on TV. Alright, that last statement would’ve sounded far more appropriate a year ago.
Without further ado, here now are solutions to 8 common Twitter problems you may have. I hope you enjoy them and share some of your own solutions or questions as well.
Meeting the 140-character limit
Were you utterly distraught when you were in the middle of tweeting about your fantastic bathroom adventure this morning when you saw this?
I know I have. Luckily, with much practice, I’ve come to accept this humbling struggle between man and bird. Let’s learn by example how to write the most with the least number of words and still get the same delicious story across:
- “Had a delicious Burrito Supremo w/ xtra chze, gaucamole. Aftr tlking w/ toilet, found no wipers. Oh crp! Sob”
Amazing! 108-characters! Well done! But…we can surely fit more information than that, right? Let’s try and add some more juicy details into this awfully smelly story!
- “Burrito Supremo+xtra Chze+Guacamole=’Where’s the wipers at?!’ Half-hr. l8er, janitor came to clean up, rescued me. Then, laughed at me. FML.”No way! 140-characters exactly!!!!! It’s like I just look all of the Harry Potter books and shrunk them down to the size of a Dr. Suess book! That takes a lot of practice and hard work, my friend. I hope you fare as well in your tweeting escapades. For now, let us observe a well-established wordsmith at his best, otherwise known as Neil Patrick Harris:
Alternatives to Website Version of Twitter
There’s a host of available alternatives to using Twitter besides the web version. For example, there are full-featured desktop clients for you to try out. Among the best are Tweetdeck (my personal choice) and Seesmic. I also like to use Hootsuite which is really a complement to the web version. It’s main attraction to me is its ability to schedule tweets and display analytics for clicked links.
For the mobile user, I can only speak for those with iPhones and iPod Touches. I’ve tried numerous Twitter applications and the one I admire the most is Tweetie 2. It has a very responsive and minimalistic interface and it’s built-in-browser works very well. Plus, it’s only $2.99. I highly recommend it. Among the others I recommend trying out is SimplyTweet and Twittelator.
Easily Follow Twitter Conversations with Nested Replies
I introduced this simple solution not so long ago in my post 6 Greasemonkey Scripts That Work on Google Chrome. In order to make it easy for you to see the course of a conversation between you and somebody else, download and install the Nested Twitter Replies script from the Userscripts library. For Chrome users, this is all you have to do, assuming you are currentlyrunning version 4.0. For Firefox users, you must first download the Greasemonkey add on before proceeding.
How to Find Your First Tweet or Follower Ever
Have you ever wanted to go down memory lane and revisit your first tweet ever? No? Is it because it’s too embarrassing for you to be reminded of your past Twitter noob-self? Well, whatever it was that you wrote, it couldn’t have been as bad as this guy’s:
To learn more about this infamous tweet, read this post I wrote awhile back titled 5 Reasons Why I Hate Driving.
The site I used to locate my first tweet is at myfirsttweet.com. See? Not very hard to remember. All you have to do is enter your username, or maybe someone else’s, and the little computer man sitting inside your computer will output your first tweet ever. How cool!
How about your first follower? Well, there’s a site for that too! It’s name is FirstFollower.com and it works basically the same way; enter your username and it will spit out your first follower. Here’s mine:
Sadly, this account no longer exists…
[email protected]#% How do I get more followers?!
Super-ultra secret/confession that is way too embarrassing to reveal but I’ll tell you anyways: I once mass followed a bunch of people in the hopes that some of them would automatically follow me back.
Sadly, it worked. Aside from all the moral questions that would be raised in committing such an act, this method does the job very well. I jumped from about 180 to 250 followers over a weekend of mass following. Unfortunately, that meant mass unfollowing these people soon afterwards, which isn’t as easy as the doing it the other way around(that’s what she said!).
Want to instantly get 1001 new Twitter followers? Well, Sebastien Page compiled a massive list of 1001 Twitter users who supposedly have an automatic follow-back feature enabled. Just randomly click on this ridiculous list of who-the-hell-is-this-guy?’s and there’s a good chance that you will strike gold. Gawd, talking about this sounds so dirty.
How do I unfollow my boring friend on Twitter without hurting his frail feelings?
Hmmmmm…good question. Unfortunately, there isn’t a very good answer to that question. If you happen to own the iPhone Twitter app, Twittelator, there is an option in which you can “mute” certain people you follow. For instance, if @louddrunkguy101 can’t stop tweet-spamming your Twitter feed with loud, drunken messages, go to his profile page and locate the Mute/Block/Notify option on his profile page. Click it and you go select the option to mute his tweets. It’s a whole lot quieter now, eh?
As far as other Twitter clients go, you are out of luck. Just send this offending Twitter-criminal a mention or better yet a direct message and tell him the cold, hard truth (That’s what she said!). He has to hear it anyways.
How do I get a Twitter username that is already taken?
If you find yourself in the same scenario, there is a chance for you to obtain that highly coveted username of yours. Of course, there are certain criteria in order for this to happen. According to @zee, you must follow this set of instructions:
- Email [email protected] with your username request. Include the following pieces of information
- The username you want
- Your existing username, if you have one
- Whether you want to change your username, or start a new account with the username you’re requesting
Of course, there is a catch. If the owner of the username you seek is an active user, you have a better chance sending the mafia after this guy to claim the username because Twitter has a rule which terminates accounts only if they aren’t used for the last 6-9 months. So, it won’t do you any good if @sexybeast or @sexydevil are active Tweeters.
How do I remove myself from a Twitter list?
This is really easy to do. If someone puts you in his “People That Suck At Golf” list on Twitter, there is a way to get yourself unlisted without having to file a lawsuit. Simply block the user who created the list, and then unblock them. And like magic, you’re off the list. No way!
I know you have some questions about Twitter on your mind. Let me know, and I’ll try to solve it for you.