If you’re as obsessed with your stunted follower count as I am, you have the unfortunate tendency to immediately follow back anyone that deigns to acknowledge your humble little account to ensure that they won’t unfollow you. I learned the hard way that sometimes it would be better to block an account than follow it back, because as with all things that started out as mediums of pure human expression, Twitter has been taken over by trolls, advertisers, talentless self-promoters, and regular old idiotic humans. After much practice, I learned to pick out, by only the names and bios, which accounts deserve a follow-back and which would just clutter your inbox with ads and your feed with stolen, uninspiring inspirational tweets. For those less experienced at picking out the few good apples from among the many bad, here are 5 types of Twitter accounts to avoid.
Comedians Who Boast About Being Funny in Their Bio
There are quite a few good Twitter comedians. People can be surprisingly funny when they have unlimited time to compose a joke or invent a retort that they’d never be fast-thinking enough to use in everyday conversation. While Twitter is a great place to discover ordinary funny people, many comedy accounts are about as humorous as getting a root canal. A sure sign of an unfunny account is when they boast about their own hilariousness in their bio. If their bio contains the words “comedian” or “funny,” then they are probably neither. Truly funny accounts go with something simple, catchy, and witty, and don’t have to boast of their awesomeness to get followers, because their awesomeness is readily apparent.
Accounts Following as Many People as Are Following Them
Often talentless people will mass follow whoever in the hopes of gaining a follow back. It’s a classic con, if a little unoriginal. An account with no particular merit can gain thousands of followers nearly overnight, but has the tendency to have as many or more follows as followers. To counter this problem, some accounts trick people into following and then unfollow them and hope they don’t notice. There are even helpful apps that they use to unfollow anyone who isn’t following them or even remove half of their follows altogether so the number doesn’t seem too massive. These accounts might have a lot of followers, but chances are that they don’t deserve them. Wow, that was a lot of variations on the word ‘follow’.
Accounts with Email Addresses, Instagram Links, and Personal Information in the Bio
These accounts are often aspiring artists, musicians, and actors, and are always about shameless self-promotion. While exaggerated narcissism can be funny in the right hands, these people genuinely think that everyone in the world wants to know everything about them just because they got 5,000 views on one of their YouTube covers. Unless you can spin it into an amusing tale, nobody wants to know exactly how you’re feeling and why and nobody wants to be bombarded with links to your various online achievements. They often post overused inspirational quotes or meaningless platitudes in an attempt to make themselves look wise and get easy stars.
Accounts Where the Profile Pic is a Bikini-Clad Mirror Selfie
I don’t care if their bio claims that they are awesome and funny and I should follow them, girls who post bikini-clad mirror selfies and guys who post pics of their abs almost certainly have nothing worthwhile to say. They are only interested in getting as many stars and comments like “damn, girl!” and “looking totes hot today! as usual lol ;)” as possible to help grow their already oversized egos. When they’re not posting bathroom selfies, they resort to the usual Twitter filler of inspirational quotes, links to pointless YouTube videos, retweets of people with actual talent, and complaints about the various men or women that have wronged them.
Accounts Whose Bios Contain Only Emojis or Hashtags
Chances are that if the bio consists entirely of smiley faces, hearts, flowers, and various other symbols of ambiguous meaning, the tweets do also. I might be the only one, but I’m not really interested in seeing people express their emotions in strings of enigmatic cartoons. I shouldn’t need an Emoji translator when scrolling through my Twitter feed. Also, the only thing that putting hashtags in your bio achieves is making you look annoying. Good tweets use hashtags sparingly, and good bios use them not at all.
Above all, try not to let your account have any of these characteristics (I know I’m guilty of one). Be creative without being narcissistic, funny without being trite, and inspirational without being annoying. The best form of self-promotion is just being awesome, and no amount of links to YouTube covers or mirror selfies can make up for being plain old boring.