Twitter No-No: scheduled tweets

1169twitter.jpgScheduling posts on a blog is quite normal – but scheduling tweets is a social no-no according to media commentator Steven Waddington and his Twitter followers.

He doesn’t mean auto-tweeting off an RSS when some new content is posted on your site (thankfully, we are so guilty of that) but when you prepare a “conversational” tweet a bit in advance then set it to post out at certain time. Apps like FutureTweets allow you to do this..

Why do people schedule tweets?
Social media companies do it sometimes to catch the American audience who are up and on Twitter at times when most Brits are in bed.

Apparently some people do it when they are going to be off on holiday or otherwise away from Twitter/internet but want for some reason to keep feeding their Twitter audiences their tweets.

FutureTweets suggests four other reasons..
1) Have an alibi…
2) Automatically wish your friend a wonderfull day each morning
3) Remind yourself each friday evening to quit work early and go for the friday evening drinks…

The general consensus is “No, don’t do this, it’s creepy.”

Why it’s creepy
I guess it’s the difference between preparing a speech/presentation and preparing comments for use in a casual conversation. Preparing and scheduling longer stuff like blogs is fine, but scheduling what is supposed to be spontaneous and of the moment just comes across as weird.

Also! you don’t know what will have happened by 3pm – what if you’re not having a nice cup of tea? What if all the trains have been cancelled? What the other football team actually won? this is a recipe for sounding like an idiot.

When being creepy can be quite funny
I’m not saying I’ll never use this function though. Hell, I *like* being creepy sometimes. The whole scheduling thing could be used to disconcerting effect for tweets like: “I’m asleep now”, “I’m still asleep btw” or “I hope the world hasn’t ended by now”. Little things like that.

Using it too much though does undermine the core of Twitter’s authenticity and appeal – that it is *real-time*. So don’t do it guys!

[via sarahhartley]

Anna Leach