Chris Alexander

On Engineering

Just As Bad As The Spammers

10th February, 2010

A few evenings ago, I got home and found my Twitter timeline flooded by tweets from just about every source possible *except Twitter. *It lead me to have a bit of a rant…

Right, one more Foursquare, Gowalla or Fallen London tweet and I’m going to unleash a rage-filled blog post on yo’ asses. - Me

And here we are a few days later. With these tweets continuing.

Permit me to explain why they, quite simply, make me rage.

There Are Options

I’m fairly certain that these services don’t force you to tweet when you perform actions in them; if there was I’m sure there would be uproar.

I’m also fairly certain I saw someone mention that the Fallen London tweets were optional, but accelerated your progress in the game if you did it. That’s a bit naughty really, but clever from a marketing perspective.

The point I’m trying to make is that if you are filling my Twitter stream up with this kind of stuff then it is your decision, not the product you are using.

Produce Something Interesting

It wouldn’t be so bad if the tweets were actually useful or interesting to me in some way. But hearing niche details on the game you’re playing, or getting simply a venue name and a link tweeted, doesn’t really cut it when I’m not playing that game or not where you are.

Some would say that I spam by tweeting about blog posts I write - quite possibly how you found this one today.

However my argument would be that I try and keep the content interesting and relevant; I don’t repeatedly post links (I think I posted one link twice in 24 hours once, and haven’t done it since) and I don’t automatically post the tweets - everything coming out of my tweet stream is me deciding to post it there and then.

Incidentally, this blog does have its own dedicated Twitter feed at @chris_alex_blog, should you feel the need to be notified in an automated manner whenever I push a post.

I Don’t Need Duplication

Quite simply, if I want to see your updates and medals in Foursquare then I will use Foursquare and add you there. If I want to play a browser-based RPG, I will go find one myself. End of.

Nothing More Than Spamming

The simple fact of the matter is you are posting messages that are unsolicited to me.

I will acknowledge that it is entirely my decision if I continue following offenders in this case; however it really does spoil a really interesting feed when it is repeatedly trashed by messages like this.

So please keep your social networks separate, and make all of them enjoyable for everyone.