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This weekend I went looking for Eddie Izzard on Twitter. I like his world and political ideas and thought his tweets would be a good addition to my feed. I found that Mr. Izzard has over a million followers and yet only follows 71 people.
I have had WAY too many conversations with authors and publishers about their “Twitter marketing work” and how they are “putting it out there” on Twitter and Facebook. I have never thought of Twitter as a way to push myself out there. I have always seen it as an amazing learning bank.
There are agents, publishers and industry insiders who generously share their wisdom, pass on news and tidbits and forward fantastic articles that I never would have seen otherwise. Because of them (and Twitter), I am a more educated, informed person. I would not have ever have gotten the benefit of their wisdom without twitter and I am grateful for their generousity.
There are also a number of industry folks who use my twitter page as a place to promote (read: spew) their latest review, minor triumph or self-serving mention. For them, Twitter is a marketplace, not a place of learning and community. Okay, I can see that; I can let Twitter be a marketplace on THEIR computer, but not mine.
For me, Twitter is an exchange of information, not a place to sell yourself. It is a forum where I get to give and take with no expectations. It is like any other relationship… Those who enter into it wondering what they can get out of it are not good relationship prospects. The next time an author asks me about the return on my Twitter time investment, I am going to hit him/her over the head with a piece of Church of England cake.
So that leads me to my post next time… Should I be more selective about who I follow? Shall I unfollow those who have not turned out to be good relationship prospects?