For reatively new Twitter users such as myself one of the most vexing questions has been to figure out what is the protocol for following someone who is following you.

In an excellent article on Mashable, Atherton Bartelby has posted the top reasons he won’t follow and I think they are right on target.

Here is a qucik review with my own thoughts;

  • No avatar-  How difficult is it to find a picture or graphic?  No avatar, no follow back.
  • No location, bio, website- How can anyone decide to follow back when they don’t know anything about you?
  • Website is MySpace- What serious Twitter user would be caught dead using MySpace as their website?
  • Following far more than you follow and no updates- This looks both predatory and stupid.  The whole point of having followers is to update them.
  • Profile refers to “internet expert”- I see way too many of these and based on their tweets they are lying for the most part.
  • Updates pushing products-  Very annoying.  We want a community not another bunch of hucksters.
  • Poorly constructed auto DM’s- I find the auto DM”s annoying, plus many of them run up my text charges and are very impersonable.
  • Updates harp on adding more followers- Guilty as charged.  Every once in awhile as I am about to hit another follower mark, 500, 600 etc… I tweet about it.  I realize that some feel that this is not a great way to use Twitter, but frankly it works.  Just don’t do it all the time.
  • Arguing- I’ll pass on this since I haven’t seen much evidence of this.
  • Not engaging followers- I have had some great “conversations’ on Twitter with my followers, but the more followers you have the harder it will be to engage a significant number.  Stay on topic and try not to bore people and you will be fine.
  • Updates Locked-  This one is mine.  If I can’t see what you tweet about I won’t follow.

As with anything in the social networking sphere there will be varying viewpoints, but overall I think Bartleby has done a great job of summarizing some of the biggest dilemmas Twitter users face.