Why are people whose Twitter bios claim to be “social media gurus” always the worst at actually using it? A lot of these so-called experts keep making a rookie mistake: beginning a tweet with a username, not realizing that means only mutual followers can see the tweet.
While I’m very sympathetic to accidental typos, this is more of a fundamental misunderstanding of how Twitter works. For those cases where you need to begin a sentence with a username, the typical trick is to toss in a period first, i.e. “.@BuzzFeed is my favorite site.”
Tweets with this misunderstanding are sent all the time, but I just couldn’t escape them today as I was browsing through responses to this morning’s scandal with the official @sweden twitter feed. Sheesh!
Here are tweets made by people whose bios claim to have some fluency or skill in social media, that will only ever been seen by the few (if any) of their mutual followers with @sweden:
@Sweden Twitter account provokes outrage with ‘Jew’ rant - New York Daily News http://t.co/IkBvSQex— William Lark
Bio: Social Networking Guru, Discussing Social Media & Marketing Strategies. Successful Online Marketer since 1994 willing to teach you his methods
@Sweden Twitter Account Stirs Controversy - Huffington Post http://t.co/d44aHJH0— Linah
Bio: To Share Online Biz Opportunities. Interests - affiliate marketing, SEO, online marketing methods with little investment and effort
@Sweden hands over keys to its Twitter account to a new citizen each week. This week has not gone well. #swedentweets http://t.co/U0XbYIUm— Demetria Gallegos
Bio: Community Editor of The Wall Street Journal and Juggle on Sunday columnist.
@Sweden Twitter Account Stirs Controversy http://t.co/YSCBCWnF— Dean Barnard
Bio: Hi guys, I love to help other people find the best online business opportunities to help them quit there day job!!!
@Sweden Twitter Account Stirs Controversy http://t.co/LjDxWkks— Vera Rich
Bio: Ladies and gentlemen, I love to help other people make the best use of TWITTER,looking forward to seeing your tweets
@sweden Twitter Experiment Goes Painfully Awry: http://t.co/Rtxnbg0O via @mashable #nationbranding— DaphnÃ© Kakaiya
Bio: Bringing together news, events, and blog posts on place branding and public diplomacy in several languages.
@sweden twitter experiment blows up http://t.co/m1jpLseR But click thru to her blog & they didn’t see that coming!?! http://t.co/ZYfelwdz— Billy Huys
Bio: Social marketing @possible, Designer, Photographer, Returned @peacecorps Volunteer + Constant Digital Disciple. Opinions are my own.
@Sweden Twitter account - has it been hacked? No, its Government sanctioned! http://t.co/R8rErfyv #socialmedia— Michael Sharp
Bio: Digital Development Manager for Publishing Company, sharing web, mobile, video, social media, augmented reality and search news, plus insight and predictions
@Sweden #Twitter Experiment Goes Painfully Awry http://t.co/h4XXMVLx via @mashable— Alessandro Rigato
Bio: Online Reputation & Social Media at @AboutYou_TSW by #TSW
@Sweden Twitter Account Stirs Controversy http://t.co/bsiC9KkU— Bruce Remington
Bio: I’m indifferent to most items on the planet. Some people call me a Social Media Guru. I don’t correct them. #TeamFollowBack
@Sweden Twitter experiment sparks controversy - Tech Talk http://t.co/f9i5vZQA— Chenda Ngak
Bio: CBSNews.com technology & lifestyle blogger. I like beautiful things, quick wit, technology, and video games. Opinions are my own.
@Sweden Twitter experiment sparks controversy http://t.co/kSQTk8Lh— CBS News Tech Talk
Bio: Follow Tech Talk for all the latest technology news.