Sunday, February 08, 2015

Following humans

Wow, it occurs to me that using a certain phrase in a title can drive traffic and with two recent posts high in the list of popular ones with that phrase in the title I will avoid it for this one. I'm not just interested in popular. Don't mind it. Like to study it. But don't chase it.

But the subject area is so fascinating I'll see what happens without explicit mention of that particular phrase with a subject that is important to me, which is trying to be sure you're following an actual human being, behaving like one, when you're out there, on that thing, which I won't mention, like on Twitter.

One thing I will admit I use is the follower to followed ratio. If you have more followers than follow you, then I am unlikely to follow you, unless it's clear you're ok from other sources. For instance I follow a lot of political reporters on Twitter who often follow more people than follow them. That's ok. But I follow them either from their organizations, or from other political reporters, like who follow or retweet them.

To me the issue of following actual human beings behaving like human beings versus a bot, which is following TONS of people, while only a few follow, only to drop them if not followed, and tweeting machine-like with things over and over again, is one of those issues where I'd like to brainstorm an answer, but it's also an area where a solution doesn't occur to me beyond the obvious.

And obvious to me is: if an account is behaving like a machine, maybe those running organizations should do something about it?

What good is such an account?

I mention Twitter but, hey, is it an issue for me elsewhere? Pondering.... Still thinking, but also typing which is interfering with my typing so should stop and serious consider...oh yeah! Have had a few cases on Google+, and roughly same as on Twitter now that I think about it, but that's maybe once a week or two? And only when I'm tweeting a lot? Or on Google+ posting a lot?

It's weird: it's like the very behavior certain companies want from you attract the kind of followers you don't want! While NOT doing that behavior so much, like when I don't tweet that much and post more rarely then I'm more protected, I think. Though haven't done an objective study of it.

I don't think that's the answer companies like Twitter and Google+ want though.

So good luck following humans out there! Interesting that I assume that's what people want. And thanks for the surge of people who web analytics are telling me are showing up, though I'm not sure what you're doing once you get here, or exactly why you came. But you're welcome regardless and I just don't want you disappointed. So let's see without mentioning that certain subject, though this post is actually about it, how popular it will be.

James Harris
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