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The Seven Deadly Sins of Twitter – Are You Guilty?

by Steve Fisher on January 5, 2010

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7-deadly-sinsThe use of Twitter has gone from a geek’s cool communication tool of choice to a platform that captures real-time trends and information into almost a new layer of the web. However, with all this good there will be bad – bad form, bad etiquette and bad behavior. Because I just love lists, I thought I would go old school and in this case, old Catholic school. I went to Catholic school for 12 years (Grade 1-12) and to build my guilt threshold, the seven deadly sins were burned into my brain. As a part of self-healing therapy, I share my guilt skills and make the parallel for the Seven Deadly Sins of Twitter.

The Seven Deadly Sins of Twitter

  1. Extravagance/LustTwitter example: Twitter Porn – I mean come on, really? Porn is every part of the Internet and when someone follows me and they have 2 followers, following 1500, has an avatar of a hot girl and a weird twitter name, do you really think I am gonna follow you?
  2. GluttonyTwitter example: Oversharing or TMI people – I hate to break it to you – but we DO NOT want to know about everything you are doing. True, Twitter was originally about “What are you doing” but I really don’t care that you are in the bathroom and must chronicle every bit of your life. Sharing is good, oversharing with too much information (TMI) is not. Twitter has evolved to “What’s Happening” and even changed it’s page to reflect that.
  3. GreedTwitter example: The Sales Pitch/Get Rich Quick Stuff – I am one who believes that Twitter is a powerful marketing tool if used for good and not evil. Talk like a human and show me why I should buy from you and I might listen. But PLEASE STOP pitching me. Especially via a direct message. That will get you blocked immediately.
  4. SlothTwitter examples: Auto DMs and Feed Bots – Ever get a follow then go to their page and look ok and then you get this “Thanks for Following Me. I am awesome. To make a million $ http://Iamajerk.me”. Yeah, it is lazy and it fills up my DM queue with people I am actually having a conversation with. Do it and you get a spam block. The other side is the feed link bot where you might not get an auto DM but their feed is almost 100% links to their blog or some campaign they are running. It is ok to have links, that adds value to your profile since you are sharing
  5. Wrath/AngerTwitter example: @Response Trolls – The @ symbol is used in Twitter to focus a reply and engage/join a conversation. Almost all the time it is productive but some times it is not. Trolls and haters are the mean bullies of the web and they exist on Twitter. Maybe you have gotten into an “@ response fight” or had a random response that was just mean an unnecessary. The beauty of Twitter can be summed into one word “BLOCK”. Being a bully might have worked when you were 8 yrs old on playground but people don’t have to put up with you. Get blocked enough and your account can get suspended. Love that.
  6. Envy - Twitter example: Following/Follower Obsessions – You have 100,000 followers? Wow, I am so impressed that I want to beat you and will be green with envy until I add ever person I can find to beat your numbers. These people are more concerned with their stats than actually engaging being a part of the community.
  7. Pride/VanityTwitter example: Talking Only About Yourself – Ok, I will say it – It is NOT all about you. I know, I know, you are awesome and you sit around with your friends congratulating yourselves on being masters of the universe. These people usually have no interest in building relationships and getting to know anyone.

Are You Guilty? I am of a few.

In the vein of “Let He Who is Without Sin Cast the First Stone” I am/was guilt of a few of these transgressions. My big one for a long time was being a link bot (Sloth) because I thought my Twitter profile needed to say something and I needed to promote as much as I could. For those of you that experienced that over the last year, I am sorry. For those of you that stayed connected, thanks. I also disconnected my Twitter feed from my Facebook page and only connect updates on Twitter by using #fb so that my wall isn’t so noisy.

So what are your Twitter deadly sins? Leave a comment, confess and you shall be forgiven. There is redemption for all. Promise.

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    • http://listentoleon.net ListenToLeon

      Nice article, especially sins # 1, 3 and 4. I cannot stand automated DMs. That's my Twitter pet peeve!

    • scarlettpencilpoint

      In the following sentence, you should be using “its” (the possessive form of it), not “it's” (a contraction for it is).

      Twitter has evolved to “What’s Happening” and even changed it’s page to reflect that.

    • http://listentoleon.net ListenToLeon

      Nice article, especially sins # 1, 3 and 4. I cannot stand automated DMs. That's my Twitter pet peeve!

    • scarlettpencilpoint

      In the following sentence, you should be using “its” (the possessive form of it), not “it's” (a contraction for it is).

      Twitter has evolved to “What’s Happening” and even changed it’s page to reflect that.