You may have heard the story of, both famous and now former PR, Justine Sacco and her unhappy tweet a few days ago. In light of everyone's sanity, I immediately started thinking about some must-follow rules on twitter, given that this social platform is quite more open and public than what your Facebook or other favorite social media tool can be. So, in hopes that we can learn from this experience, let me review some basic rules.
1. Know what you tweet.
This is on top of my list. I can't remember the countless times I have spoken to friends who don't get the idea of twitter; they think the world of the little bird is full of those who tweet uninterested and unrelated news of themselves. Twitter is a platform where you can obtain tons of information if you know who to follow. Receiving that information comes with the responsibility of giving it out, too. Of course, this doesn't mean that you can't take a selfie or tweet how much you hated such a thing; but considering your niche, provide accurate and reliable info.
2. Don't drunk tweet.
Ok, this is probably what happened to Justine. Now, I am not saying that she was drunk but those text messages (or tweets) that only come out when you can't walk straight must be kept confidential at all cost, even when you're not drunk. Think before you tweet. It can cost you a job. This is usually the case when it comes to sensitive topics like gun control, gay marriage. A good twitterer will make a stand while being respectful.
3. Interact with others.
Twitter is not only a matter of giving out information and receiving it. It is also an invitation to connect with other people, especially those you share a passion or interest with. Retweets are a form of interacting because you compliment the other person and share information at the same time. Now, don't just RT everything that "sounds" good; be aware of what it is if you want your followers to follow you with reason.
In times like ours, when news can all originate out of a simple tweet, it is very easy to break the flow.
I am an ePortfolio instructor working in New York City. I am also a student in the MA program in educational psychology at Hunter College. In my current position, I instruct students how to develop and build their ePortfolio to showcase their academic skills. I also collaborate in professional development seminars with faculty members from various departments on building the curriculum to teach the first year seminar experience. Read more about me.