“Talkin’ bout the questions, it’s the questions y’all
It’s the questions (what?), it’s the questions, dig it
The questions (why?) it’s the questions boy
It’s the questions (huh?), that’s what it’s all about” - Common
To follow or not to follow? Promo or spam? Those are the questions. This entry basically evolved from a ‘twitter rant’ I went on last week. Let me know your thoughts…comments agreeing or disagreeing are welcomed! ;-)
When used well, social media can be a fun way of keeping in touch with people, networking, marketing and promoting. If you know me, this is how I utilize it and many good contacts and friendships have been a result of myspace (when it was poppin’), Facebook and of course, Twitter. It’s not all good though, you get subjected to spam, can get hacked if you’re not careful and there are the people whose world is practically revolving around how many followers/friends they have. Of course, it’s great to have numbers, it can be a sign of stature and popularity but it’s how you go about getting them that’s more important in my opinion anyway.
The other day, I got a rather pissed off msg via Facebook. I will not give this guy any shine so I’ll call him ‘Tony’. I didn’t know Tony; he didn’t look at all familiar by his pic but yet, he sent me a msg. (Side Note: I wish FB would give you the option to disable msgs) The msg said, “WTF! I’ve been following you for months and I’ve tweeted you a few times because you claim you want people to ‘network and have convos’ but I never hear back from you. Doesn’t that make you a fucking hypocrite? You haven’t even followed back! What kinda of shit is that? –Tony, the producer you SHOULD know” I was livid. What makes matters worse is when I went to the twitter acct he was talking about, his profile is LOCKED! I just let out a big laugh. I wish it was more common knowledge in the twitter world that if you’re account is locked and you tweet someone who IS NOT following you, they will not see your tweet. To be honest, if you’re trying to promote someone/something on twitter or even if you’re trying to network and meet people, having a locked profile defeats the purpose. I probably shouldn’t have bothered responding to Tony but I had to say my two cents! I wrote back: “What a great way to network...finding me on FB to curse at me for not following or responding on twitter! If you knew what you were doing, you’d know when you have a locked profile (which you have by the way), only the people following you can see what you tweet. Welcome to the BLOCK party!” Then I swiftly blocked Tony from both FB and twitter. Unbelievable! SMH!
My other point is this ‘follow back’ business on Twitter. Correct me if I’m wrong but I don’t feel obligated to follow you if you follow me. Just like it’s your choice to follow me, it’s mine not to. It has nothing to do with being rude. I follow people who make my timeline enjoyable to read and folks I communicate with. Numbers and ratios (yes, some judge on follower/following ratios…smh) on twitter don’t matter to me and it shouldn't to most people. Someone not following you certainly shouldn't be the subject of a rant or insulting letter. My whole thing about Tony is why did me following him back matter to him so much that he actually searched me out on Facebook and sent me a message? Some have even gotten mad that I’ve unfollowed them. There is some sort of a glitch that somehow unfollows random folks on Twitter…you might actually think that’s a load of BS but it’s actually true because that’s happened to me. If I actually do unfollow you though, it’s either because I don’t find what you have to say interesting or you fill my timeline with spam or negativity. Is that a crime? Sheesh!
Lastly, twitter links…*sigh* Ah, yes…this strikes a cord with many people. Some people think sending their music links to random people is marketing and promotion aka ‘gettin their grind on’. To the folks on the receiving end, it’s more like 'gettin their spam on' and it's crazy annoying...at least to me it is. I know I’m getting these links mostly because of my association with 9th Wonder, Jamla Records and Jamla Army. It also could be because of my blog but there’s a way to do it. Receiving a random link from someone I do not know causes me to almost immediately report them as spam. Think of it this way: remember when leaving a big party or club, there’s always some guy just outside the door standing there, waiting to pass everyone a flyer to another event? I don’t know about you but most of the time, I try not to take it or if they insist, I take it and toss it somewhere after I’ve walked away. To me, random links are similar to that. This goes for Facebook too! I get crazy messages on FB and again, I wish there was a way to not let anyone send messages anymore.
Another way to look at it is this: all those indie/underground artists you follow, have you ever seen them tweet dozens and dozens of folks with their latest project or movie? No! They tweet about it several times a day so that it goes on to their followers’ timelines. Some may argue with me saying they can do that because they have more followers which is true BUT I think of it this way, this is where networking comes to play. If you build relationships with people, they will want to check for you and possibly spread the word out for you. It really works, I am an example of that.