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Joel Kelly

Terrific post.

The most important thing, I think, is that Twollow allows you to auto-unfollow as well. You know, ditch the people who don't follow you back so it doesn't screw up your followers:following ratio.

Automating insincerity, really.

"Hanging on every word" indeed...

Authentic Seacoast Resorts

Great definition of social media. We couldn't agree more. And you are right about @NS_Archives. There was a stir on Twitter when went silent earlier this year. Relationships take work. And the more people understand that point, the better social media will be.

Darrin (deepr) Searancke

All good points, Carman. Although I see that 'auto-replies/responses" are ment as a courtesy, as you have already indicated the concept of auto-follow ... erm, automation - completely negates the basis of "social media" programs and the communities they allow to be created. Indeed, if I had the time and energy, I would probably remove a large amount of unappreciated followers on my account. Perhaps the next program created should be "Un-Twollow" ... Hold on a minute, I'd better talk to some programmers!

Giles Crouch (Webconomist)

Great points Carman; memories of some rabid discussion on a deck recently!

Seems the MLM'ers and Network Marketing types see this as a "nirvana of leads" yet fail to engage in anything close to a relationship.

Social Media is not tossing-dynamite-into-a-lake style fishing...

Steve Mallett

Steve from Twollow here.

First, I hadn't responded previously 'cause I'm up to my ears & trying to take some vacation time during down time. Ironically, I found this link through a twollow auto-follow... I followed the exact tweet back to your post.

Anyhoo, of course companies should do more than just target & message people urls to their "hot deal"! or just try to post big follower numbers. Many get it. Many don't. Big surprise, but we try to coax clients into putting more social in "social media".

Laters,
S

Drew

I'm not entirely sure I understand your point. As I understand it Twollow allows a Twitter account which you control to auto-follow someone who mentions a key word.

Take a step back and review that for a moment. It allows you to auto-follow. Twollow doesn't send any messages, and it certainly doesn't force anyone to reciprocate the follow from what I've seen.

I don't see anything in the design that stops people from engaging in meaningful conversation with the people they've just begun following.

It seems a little silly to me to confuse a tool with those using it. Or perhaps more accurately to define a tool by how you imagine it could be used in a worst case scenario.

You could use Twollow to auto-follow every person on Twitter who wrote "pictures of my kids" but that doesn't make Twollow a tool useful exclusively to pedophiles.

If we judged email, blogging, instant messaging and social networking with the same criteria you employed to judge Twollow, you would be considered Chief Spam Officer at Colour. After all, the most easy way to use those tools also happens to be the most malevolent.


cpirie

tks to everyone for your comments - much appreciated!

@Steve Mallet - no worries, enjoy the vacation! Glad you found the tweet and post via Twollow. For any regular readers who may not know, many options exist for listening for keyword-based mentions on Twitter - https://search.twitter.com works great and it's free. And we use Radian6 for more robust social media monitoring.

@Drew - I really appreciate the comment, a great addition to the conversation. Probably the easiest way to respond is simply point by point through your comment. My responses are in brackets below. Hopefully this helps.

I'm not entirely sure I understand your point. (Agreed.) As I understand it Twollow allows a Twitter account which you control to auto-follow someone who mentions a key word. (True.)

Take a step back and review that for a moment. (Okay.) It allows you to auto-follow. (Right.) Twollow doesn't send any messages, and it certainly doesn't force anyone to reciprocate the follow from what I've seen. (It does not force people to reciprocate. What it does do, however, is cause a follow notification to be sent for the vast majority of Twitter users who set up their account to alert them via email of a new follower. In and of itself, that's spammy.)

I don't see anything in the design that stops people from engaging in meaningful conversation with the people they've just begun following. (True.)

It seems a little silly to me to confuse a tool with those using it. (True.) Or perhaps more accurately to define a tool by how you imagine it could be used in a worst case scenario. (I am not defining a tool by how it could be used in a worst case scenario. I am defining a tool based upon how it squares with the culture of the space it's operating within. I think this was covered off fairly well in the post with comments around context as well as in the last paragraph of the post.)

You could use Twollow to auto-follow every person on Twitter who wrote "pictures of my kids" but that doesn't make Twollow a tool useful exclusively to pedophiles. (Agreed. I don't recall suggesting otherwise.)

If we judged email, blogging, instant messaging and social networking with the same criteria you employed to judge Twollow, you would be considered Chief Spam Officer at Colour. After all, the most easy way to use those tools also happens to be the most malevolent. (Not sure I understand your point. I judge all tools, and advise clients on their use, based upon the culture / tone of the space.)

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