I’ve used Socialoomph’s recurring tweet feature quite a bit. I find it very handy, and it’s going to make my life harder having to tweet without it. Plus, with the very limited information from Twitter, I really have no idea what Twitter considers a recurring tweet and when I might be in violation of their terms.
Here are three scenarios that I commonly use recurring or repeat tweets for. Twitter, which of these is now in violation? Or is it all of them?
Scenario 1: Promoting other people’s good posts and content
Last night, I had to take all my recurring tweets and schedule them individually. There were eight recurring tweets. Only two of them were promoting my own content.
One of the things I try to do is act as a filter for my followers. There’s so much bad content out there, that when I find a really good blog post or piece of research, I will often tweet it several times to increase the chances of my followers seeing it.
I’m using recurring tweets to promote other people’s good content. Is that what you meant to ban, Twitter?
Scenario 2: Providing information snippets
As a content specialist, and someone who has done usability research on content, I know that people often won’t read long articles. I often take studies and tweet out individual facts from them. The facts are easily digestable as tweets, and fun. But I always include a link to the study from which I obtained the fact, for those who are really interested and want to read more.
That’s a classic recurring tweet. But it’s also using the medium of Twitter for what it does best. Is that what you meant to ban, Twitter?
Scenario 3: Requesting people to take surveys
I conduct surveys as part of the research that I blog about. I also sometimes pass on links to other research surveys, to be a good citizen. A lot of the surveys I conduct are on Twitter and I look for Twitter users to fill them out. Tweeting the survey once isn’t likely to get me many responses. And the research is useless if I only get a handful of people taking the survey.
So, I tweet the link out usually at least once a day, sometimes twice a day, to my followers. Sometimes I use hashtags (like #Twitter or #study) as well. Most people respond well to these requests, or at least don’t consider them spam.
Of the eight recurring tweets I said I had to reschedule last night, the two that were mine were both tweets asking for study participants. Is this the kind of thing you meant to ban, Twitter?
Scenario 4: I promote my own content
And yes, I do use recurring tweets to promote my latest blog posts. How many times I tweet a post really depends upon how good I think it is. But if I think it’s good, I’ll tweet it once a day or even–for a really good post–twice a day for a week.
Did you really mean to ban small bloggers from promoting their post more than one time, Twitter?
Given the impact of the recurring tweet ban, I think a little guidance is in order. Again, if the concern is spam and repeats polluting the timeline, I don’t know why Twitter isn’t applying all that development muscle to implement a technical solution. But given that they aren’t, perhaps Twitter could clarify what the heck they mean by recurring tweets and what excesses they are trying to ban. Is it a certain number of recurring tweets in a certain time period? The same text repeated over and over again? The same links tweeted over and over again?
What was your goal, Twitter? And what exactly did you mean to ban?
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