Is it rude not to follow back on Twitter?

53 replies
I finally relented and signed up for Twitter. I know I'm late but I just don't have that much to say and when I do, it's very hard to condense it to 140 characters. I'm working on it- but that's not my point.

What I'd like to ask is do you think it's rude not follow someone who follows you?

I don't expect the celebrities to return a follow but what about regular folks?

How long should you wait before unfollowing those who don't follow you. A week? Am I over thinking this?

What is the appropriate Twitter etiquette regarding follows?
#back #follow #rude #twitter
  • Profile picture of the author Mark72
    In my opinion, no, it's not rude if you don't follow back.

    A large number of people who follow me turn out to be bot accounts anyway and therefore not the sort of followers that want.
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  • Profile picture of the author jvjoe
    I don't think it so, I only follow any tweet that I feel will be of good to me. I think it all depend on you to decide whether to follow or not.
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  • Profile picture of the author jeffster
    I don't think it's rude at all. Just follow who you want to follow...
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  • Profile picture of the author PeterBruce
    I find if you don't unfollow a lot of them back they will unfollow.

    Doesn't hurt to follow back.
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  • Profile picture of the author Entrecon
    When someone follows me I look at their account to see if their profile matches with my interests and then I look at their recent tweets. If they don't add value, I don't follow back. I also use who.unfollowed.me to track those individuals that just follow me until I follow back, and then unfollow me.
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  • Profile picture of the author KateOranum
    I do not think its rude at all - :S Why would it be ?
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  • Profile picture of the author Simon Ashari
    To first answer your question, it isn't rude if you don't follow someone who has followed you.

    Now regarding part of the OP



    Originally Posted by Halcyon View Post


    How long should you wait before unfollowing those who don't follow you. A week? Am I over thinking this?
    You should only be following people who provide value. Having a plan regarding unfollowing someone if they don't follow you is ridiculous.

    The people who I follow provide me with value... it doesn't matter whether or not they follow me back.

    Have fun on twitter.

    -Simon
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
    Banned
    Originally Posted by Halcyon View Post

    I finally relented and signed up for Twitter. I know I'm late but I just don't have that much to say and when I do, it's very hard to condense it to 140 characters. I'm working on it- but that's not my point.

    What I'd like to ask is do you think it's rude not follow someone who follows you?

    I don't expect the celebrities to return a follow but what about regular folks?

    How long should you wait before unfollowing those who don't follow you. A week? Am I over thinking this?

    What is the appropriate Twitter etiquette regarding follows?
    I don't follow anyone back. I'm not interested in spammy little Tweets from people trying to sell crap. I'm interested in interesting, funny people who share the same interests that I do, so I could care less if some Twitter bot gets offended when I don't follow back. I'm in Twitter for me. I enjoy it and always get great information and lots of laughs from the people I follow, which is less than 25 people.
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  • Profile picture of the author ahbittersweet8
    Not rude. Karl Lagerfeld fashion designer has tonnes of followers but he follows nobody. Sometimes if it gets too spammy, I unfollow
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  • Profile picture of the author AnnaSEO
    Not rude at all.You decide who you follow.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michelle Stevens
    Nope I don't think it's rude at all. If you follow too many people your feed is just filled with crappy spammy tweets
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  • Profile picture of the author easymoneyman
    I'd say no...You can offer a lot for others on twitter yet not want to be inundated with all of your followers non productive comments, which can dilute your own opportunity if something you really should see gets glossed over...
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  • Profile picture of the author andynathan
    Twitter is about mutually beneficial relationships. If they do not follow you back or have a junk account, then those people are not worthy of your follow.
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    • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
      Banned
      Originally Posted by andynathan View Post

      Twitter is about mutually beneficial relationships. If they do not follow you back or have a junk account, then those people are not worthy of your follow.
      That's BS. None of the 25 famous people I follow follow me back. I don't expect them too. I enjoy their Tweets, and I only follow a couple of the 1,200 people who follow me, and those only because I know them and like them, have spoken online with them or in one case, have bought a lot of sites from.
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      • Profile picture of the author Simon Ashari
        Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

        That's BS. None of the 25 famous people I follow follow me back. I don't expect them too. I enjoy their Tweets, and I only follow a couple of the 1,200 people who follow me, and those only because I know them and like them, have spoken online with them or in one case, have bought a lot of sites from.
        Exactly the attitude people on twitter should have.

        Sick of this "I'll follow you if you follow me" b.s.

        It gets to a point where people have to ask whether or not it's rude to avoid following someone who probably isn't providing value to the potential follower.

        -Simon
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  • Profile picture of the author Kierkegaard
    It used to be the case that 50% of people would follow anyone who followed them. It was considered a matter of courtesy.

    This was exploited by people who realized that they could gain credibility simply by following thousands of peeople and getting thousands of followers.

    There were also honest users who followed lots of people (all the celebrities they liked, all their friends, anyone who tweeted a quote they liked) because they thought that this was what they were supposed to do.

    What the honest users discovered was that the more people they followed the less fun they got out of Twitter. Their accounts were unmanageable. So they pruned out the follows that were cluttering up their pages. Typically leaving only their friends and a couple of useful tweeters.

    In the process people got wise.

    Any school child will tell you that the first thing they check when they look at someone's twitter is the number of followers compared to the number of people they follow. A credible account has a high number of followers and a low number of follows.

    This means that you will lose credibility by following back all your followers on Twitter.

    There are a number of ways of gaining a large amount of quality followers without just following people willy-nilly in the hope they follow you back (this method only gets low quality followers anyhow). I could list quite a few but the main one would be to get yourself followed by an authority tweeter. If you're one of the select few s/he follows then you can expect thousands of targeted, qualty, followers.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dan C. Rinnert
      Originally Posted by Kierkegaard View Post

      What the honest users discovered was that the more people they followed the less fun they got out of Twitter. Their accounts were unmanageable. So they pruned out the follows that were cluttering up their pages. Typically leaving only their friends and a couple of useful tweeters.
      Twitter introduced a feature called "lists" that makes that much more manageable. You can add followers to different lists and it becomes much easier to manage to follow large numbers of people.

      Any school child will tell you that the first thing they check when they look at someone's twitter is the number of followers compared to the number of people they follow. A credible account has a high number of followers and a low number of follows.
      School children also pick their noses and wipe it under their desks, think Justin Bieber is like the awesomest singer evah and claim the dog ate their homework, so what school kids tell you doesn't establish a good example of credibility.
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      • Profile picture of the author Kierkegaard
        Originally Posted by Dan C. Rinnert View Post

        Twitter introduced a feature called "lists" that makes that much more manageable. You can add followers to different lists and it becomes much easier to manage to follow large numbers of people.
        It's an improvement but no reason to start collecting tweets from any old Tom, Dick or Harriet. It actually proves that users are demanding a more sophisticated system - because they are more sophisticated users.

        School children also pick their noses and wipe it under their desks, think Justin Bieber is like the awesomest singer evah and claim the dog ate their homework, so what school kids tell you doesn't establish a good example of credibility.
        Credibility for what :confused:

        We're not looking for advice from School children. I think you've missed the point.

        Twitter users (even the ones who pick their noses, have Bieber-fever and think 'the dog ate my homework' is a viable excuse) are much more savvy than they once were.

        The good news is that marketing on Twitter is now much more effective than it used to be (as long as you know what you're doing).
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  • Profile picture of the author wizzard74
    In the early days it was considered rude. But now with the limits in place and so much information going through twitter, just follow back the people you want to follow back and that you're going to get something noteworthy from, not just a bunch of "buy my stuff" tweets.
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  • Profile picture of the author Expressarticles
    Twitter is an open social network, so if you don't want to follow someone, you don't have to. Nothing rude about it.
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    • Profile picture of the author PattC
      Following back is something I need to give more thought too, but you can get some real weirdos too. One I received had adult content that i wasn't interested in. I wonder why this person wanted to follow an internet marketer?
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      • Profile picture of the author wizzard74
        Originally Posted by PattC View Post

        Following back is something I need to give more thought too, but you can get some real weirdos too. One I received had adult content that i wasn't interested in. I wonder why this person wanted to follow an internet marketer?
        Because they possibly typed in "marketer" into their twitterbot and added you.
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  • Profile picture of the author Nolimit2it
    I have accounts where I WANT to follow some of the people that are interested in my tweets but other accounts where all I want to do is tweet without interacting at all with the followers.

    Wouldn't it be just logical to go through the followers (you will find a TON of junk/bot/ad type followers in there), pick and choose the ones that meet your ideology or theme of your twitter account and follow them. Who knows... you may get some amazing insight and/or info from some of their tweets.
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  • Profile picture of the author gonzotrucker
    It depends on the person who follows you. I follow back people who seem fun and interesting.
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    • Profile picture of the author sarahparks
      Originally Posted by gonzotrucker View Post

      It depends on the person who follows you. I follow back people who seem fun and interesting.
      This is my perspective. I just click on their profile, glance at their brief description, and if it's someone who's in the same business as me or with similar interests, I'll follow back.
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnBenwell
    Haha, this made my day.

    You're FREE to do whatever you want with your twitter account.
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Gram
    For me, I do feel rude not following someone back so I try to follow back when someone follows me.
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  • Profile picture of the author NewParadigm
    We are overwhelmed in life as it is w/ ads, info, data. Why would anyone want to 'opt in' for more irrelevant stuff?
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  • Profile picture of the author wizzard74
    What I tend to do nowadays is just add people to my lists, I can still see what they're saying without the need to follow them.
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  • Profile picture of the author imdomination
    I don't follow back anyone I don't recognize. Too many stupid bots on twitter that just spam you with bizopp links.
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  • Profile picture of the author imsas
    I think it's important to follow only the accounts you're truly interested in.. It's pretty annoying to see a ream of updates from accounts you have no interest what so ever.. So I don't think it's rude at all to not follow back, unless you're truly interested..
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  • Profile picture of the author jasono
    I don't think so. Why would it be? People do not follow you because they want to be followed back.
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  • Profile picture of the author icegin
    I don't see any reason why you should follow someone back just because they started to follow you.

    jasono: it's actually not uncommon. I have a Twitter account and I've had a couple of random accounts follow me solely for the purposes of trying to get me to follow them back. It's easy to identify these types of accounts: they either have something similar to "please follow me" in their description OR they unfollow you once they realise that you don't have any intention of following them back.
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  • Profile picture of the author Krisz Rokk
    Follow those people & businesses you're interested in. If you want to flush out accounts that are not following you back, use tweepi.
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  • Profile picture of the author perfectpixel
    Banned
    it's up to someone if they want to follow back, never heard of an unwritten courtesy rule about the need to follow back
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  • Profile picture of the author kristabg
    I choose who I want to follow back. If the account seems credible, I will usually follow them back. I don't automatically follow everyone who follows me and I don't see it as rude...I also don't think it is rude if I follow someone and they don't follow me. I do think it is worth checking the profile of anyone that takes the time to follow me, though.
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  • Profile picture of the author HKSEO Jonbones
    It's social networking. I wouldn't take it too seriously.
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  • Profile picture of the author ephame
    It's not rude unless that's why they followed you and are asking for it in return, i wouldn't really stress about it too much.
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  • Profile picture of the author Genycis
    It's not rude at all to not follow back... what is rude is calling out that person if they unfollow you. I trip out at those little Fllwrs things... like, I follow you based on potential networking opportunity or interested client. If I follow you and you don't follow in a few days, then the potential is not there so I may unfollow at that point... no harm, no foul...

    And then that sketchy plugin "Fllwrs" (and others like it) blasts "@genycis @otherperson @thisperson and @thosepeople unfollowed me today" (which actually, you said you use Entrecon). Okay, so I looked up some info on those things, and the consensus is that more people seem to trip out about them, almost as though it makes you look like a little kid like "Billy won't play with me so I won't play with him now either!! Waahhhh". I read several articles too that said these things may actually hurt YOUR reputation more than the person who unfollowed, as it can give the sense of "wow, more people unfollowing this person... is there really a point for me to follow too??", though the goal is supposed to be "oh, @genycis unfollowed him, then I won't follow @genycis either". but is that REALLY what it serves?

    Sorry I went off on a tangent. In short, follow who you are interested in. See, I do it for business... so yeah, I have some tweets to promote my hip hop beats, but then I also have tweets that promote my articles, my information that can help others, things like that... and then I still manually tweet as well and reply to pretty much anyone that sends me an @ message. Some people ONLY do bot type stuff. I interact with my followers as well.

    If you're doing it for business, then chances are, if they don't follow you, hit them with an unfollow in a few days... and if they seem to then follow, then follow them back.. maybe it just took them some time. The ones that trip me out are the ones that want you to help them or promote them or blah blah but never really want to follow you, and then send you a DM like you can reply to them if they're not following, you tell them, and they state that they weren't trying to follow back. SMH, I could go on this topic for days. Lol, may just be my niche though. I just keep growing my followers anyway though and almost at 6k (and I follow back most of them if they are related to my niche and business potential).
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  • Profile picture of the author specmurt
    Originally Posted by Halcyon

    What I'd like to ask is do you think it's rude not follow someone who follows you?
    According to whom it's rude?

    Originally Posted by Halcyon

    What is the appropriate Twitter etiquette regarding follows?
    According to whom it's appropriate or not?

    This is your account. This is your decision to make. You can do whatever you want.

    This is your life
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  • Profile picture of the author wesker123
    NOT at all!
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    No it's not rude not to follow someone back. Some people have signed up to a site like Social Oomph that allows them to immediately follow someone back, along with including a sales message in the response. If you get alot of Twitter followers everyday, it would take a LONG time each day to follow people back. So no, it's not rude.
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    • Profile picture of the author geolocal
      I used to auto follow everybody, but I didn't use my Twitter account much so didn't care. Then my teenagers and all their friends left Facebook and moved to Twitter, so I started using it more often (to keep tabs on them). I don't want to see all those tweets from people I don't know so I've started a serious pruning campaign, which is ongoing. I think at first it was fun to get followers, but after seeing who some of those followers were, I changed my mind about that. IMO quality beats quantity in all areas of life.

      So, to answer the OP's question, no it's not rude. Many of them are only following you so you will follow them, then they will unfollow you. Now that I don't care who follows me, Twitter is actually a lot more fun. And it's a lot easier to monitor teenagers' Twitter accounts than text messages or FB chats.
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  • Profile picture of the author sizzlemediauk
    It can be but not generally! See although its up to you as to whom you should follow or not, you must check who is following and one can't deny the fact that there are useful followers who might have followed you just for the sake of follow back and so I think you should follow them back. Else following back is not required unless you want!
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  • Profile picture of the author surferchris
    I don't think it is rude at all really. Don't worry about it!
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  • Profile picture of the author icegin
    Don't worry about it -- follow people you're genuinely interested in following. It's not rude if you don't follow people back.
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  • Profile picture of the author AmandaT
    I only follow people that tweet stuff that actually interests me. Otherwise it isn't worth my time.

    A lot of people do that mass follow to get follow backs thing... it isn't as effective as you might think. Anyone who follows everyone back probably has their stream spammed so heavily they won't see your messages.

    It is better to try to build a following by making sure your Twitter link is on your website and in your emails. Let people decide to follow you because they are interested, not because you followed them.
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  • Profile picture of the author goindeep
    its very rud not 2 fllow bk on tweetr - maksy me cry lik a babe n want my mummy
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  • Profile picture of the author JimDucharme
    Perhaps this excerpt from a post on this very subject which I wrote a while back will be helpful. I'm definitely not suggesting that the OP was thinking she is entitled to anything because it's obvious she isn't thinking that way. Just offering this for the sake of discussion/thought.

    The only real control you have in your interactions with other people is how you react to any given situation. How you react speaks volumes about who you are.

    What has value in this world is earned and never deserved. No one owes you “electric karma” and thinking you deserve it is a recipe for disappointment. We don’t get to decide in this life who will like us and who won’t and the scale which determines who we like is a sliding one. Having to earn respect is what makes gaining it worthwhile.

    I personally believe that if someone (a real person) takes the time to tweet or message me, I should respond. When it comes to business, it’s an imperative and not an option. However, I don’t friend or follow or RT people because I think I have to. Each time I choose to take one of these actions, I do so because I find value in what they offer.

    The currency of social media derives value from the contributions we all make to the community. That currency has no central bank or IMF dictating its worth. You are not a dollar bill, you are a person and you have much to offer the communities you are part of. Any value you gain in return will depreciate and not appreciate if you feel you are entitled to it.


    Regards,
    jim
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