Twitter Cracks Down
On @Name Noise!
(which creates implications…)
Anyone that’s been on twitter more than a handful of days is pretty well familiar with the @Name spam that clogs up our mentions.
Looks something like this…
“Hey @name @name2 @name3 @name4 @name5 have you heard about XYZ “
I don’t think any of us disagree that that is bad form, bad taste and a complete waste.
Stuff That Looks Like Spam
However, what sometimes does come under disagreement is whether the multimention versions of #FollowFriday are similarly spam.
One awesome community I participate in, was including all of it’s members in some pre-configured mention tweets to help community members out. In theory anyone receiving this mention is already a member of the community so certainly isn’t being solicited.
These tweets tend to in a similar “form” however to the spammy links above and there is little doubt that due to their similarity they are easy to flag. Also because members would tend to fire off 10+ of them back to back, the behavior pattern itself was flagable as spammy.
Is It Or Isn’t It?
While the last thing we want to be doing is creating noise, the tweets sent between members of that community are essentially benign as they are not soliciting the tagged members.
We have however been asking twitter to please put a crack down on the @Name/@Mention spam and a letter received, along with a banned notice, by one of our members indicates that is finally becoming a reality!
“This account was suspended for sending multiple unsolicited messages using the @reply and/or mention feature. These features are intended to make communication between people on Twitter easier. Twitter monitors the use of these features to make sure they are used as intended and not for abuse. Using either feature to post messages to a bunch of users is considered an abuse of its use, which results in account suspension.“
Honestly, I was never a fan of them anyways as I feel they dilute the quality of the original intended goals for #FollowFriday, which should read more like:
“Have you checked out @Name yet? Connect with them for #FF for hot news and tips on X, and Y and a little Z, a real cool person!”
But What About….?
So now the question that obviously has to be asked is whether the spam flag was REALLY raised only by multiple @Names or if it was raised by @Names + .
We remain uncertain about whether the “default” style #FF tweets produced by the Follow Friday Helper app, which I actually really like using.
Tweets such as this format, lack a link…. and thus I don’t know where they fall in the new restrictions.
Also unique about the Follow Friday Helper is that it points out people that have actually already mentioned you… so there is a trail of sorts that indicates that someone else initiated the dialog which makes it different than either of the two existing cases.
Fortunately however, that is only the “default” tweet type that application produces and its “recommendation” format is actually MUCH higher caliber and is something that I truly recommend. You can read more about it over here.
I do not see ANY reason to believe that correctly done “recommendation” format tweets, which look very similar to the one above that I indicated is “best practice”, will ever be penalized. Follow Friday Helper still makes even this type of tweet a lot faster.
While this example was not created by Follow Friday Helper, it could have been, and is a PERFECT example of a great recommendation mention (with or without the #FF tags) that is certain to make the recipient smile and your own followers take notice! (And if you haven’t met Melody yet you really should!)
Can you see the HUGE difference between the impact the prior three images are going to have… compared to this?
I also still sometimes use it with #Gratitude to tag multiple people (along with some words of thanks) that have shared my content… but I am careful to keep the volume of that per day low.
Summing It Up
So, I think with this improved spam filtering from twitter we are finally going to see a reduction in mention spam noise.
However, because may blog posts still exist encouraging the use of inclusion of multiple names PLUS links… that this becomes a booby-trap for new people to twitter who may mimic what they see being done.
Fortunately in the case of our community member, he was able to successfully appeal the ban and get reinstated and bring it to our attention!
How are you using the power of Recommendations and #FF tagging to help those you appreciate? What impact will this have on your tagging behavior? Do you feel this will help or hinder your ability to engage on twitter?
Play safe, play smart, make a REAL honest effort… and KEEP IT REAL!
- Is Follow Friday dead? via InfoCarnivore
- Why I’ve Never FF’d On Twitter via Mitch Mitchell
- Blog: What is #ff – and how do I get it right? via Musings from Sussex
- Please put a stop to the mass Follow Friday tweets via The Next Web
- 5 Tips to Make Your #FollowFriday Worth the Follow via PR in Your Pajamas
- How To Use #FollowFriday Effectively via Michaele Harrington