I tend to follow everyone who follows me back on Twitter, as long as they’re a real person and look like someone that will interact with me. I don’t even mind if they disagree with me or have opinions or beliefs that don’t align with my own. But is this a problem? Yesterday, I was tweeted a message about the Twitter rules which state that reciprocal inflation includes coordinating to exchange follows.
I personally think that this rule is ridiculous. In the #WritingCommunity, a hashtag that many writers connect with other writers on, there are many activities that may violate this policy. I’ve seen a good amount of “Retweet for Retweet” posts, and okay, I get that this might be a little spammy. I generally don’t take part in them anyway, I’m not really advertising anything other than my latest blog post. I’ve also seen a lot of “Follow Trains” that get a bunch of people exposure. I’ve got a little bit of mixed feelings on this one, like why shouldn’t I be able to share a list of people that I like interacting with on Twitter? If you find me interesting, you might find these people interesting. Hell, Twitter does this by recommending you people to follow!
But the one that affects me the most is the #WritersLift hashtag. As many of you know, every night I like to connect with the writing community by posing questions for others to answer about the current book they’re working on. I try to help others get insight on their characters and think about things they don’t normally do. It helps us all build out our characters a little more, giving them more depth, and ultimately giving readers a better sense these characters are real people.
But that’s a gray area now. I don’t think people are going to get outright banned for engaging with other people from it, but I don’t want to risk it. Another fellow Twitter user, Ava Lee Mosley, got banned, and if I remember correctly, she doesn’t know why. She very regularly ran these #WriterLift activities, so I’m quick to assume that’s why. I spend so much time on Twitter because I really enjoy it, and the thought of losing that and all the people I interact with scares me. It makes me go into hysterics!
A friend of mine, AJ Jones, isn’t taking it lying down. He started his own resistance against this and is putting his account at stake for what he believes is right. I’m standing right behind him, well to the side… well on the sidelines, hoping that he prevails.
What am I to do? I posted my usual character development question last night, but didn’t use the hashtags. The interaction wasn’t as great as normal, but I still got a lot of good responses and people sharing the posts. I hope that the authors who commented followed other authors that they found interesting! I mean, that’s the point of social media.
Anyway, let me know your opinion in the comments below. I know many people have already weighed in on this, but as you can tell, I had a lot more to say than one tweet or series of tweets would allow.