I can’t really get behind Follow Friday. I like it when people mention me, perhaps because I enjoy the confidence boost of someone saying what I think is interesting. But honestly, I don’t think anyone new has ever followed me from being mentioned, and I don’t think I’ve ever followed someone who was mentioned. In spite of the fact that I feel guilty for not giving those people props back, I feel like it would be a disservice to all 20 people and 140 spam bots following me to simply spam a bunch of names of people who have mentioned me.
It wasn’t always that I felt so negative about this particular aspect of Friday, but these days it seems like follow lists are just that: lists of names. If you throw my name in there with about 10 other people in one of 3 tweets that is nothing but names and “#FF”, it doesn’t really show much of an effort. The first times I saw anything about Follow Friday, it had “#FollowFriday” and a single name with a reason to follow them. That’s something worth doing. It shows you’ve put some thought into it. Of course, these days if I actually spent that much time it’d practically seem like a love letter to spend that much time thinking about a single person on my list.
Twitter’s always been a pretty ephemeral medium, so it makes sense that over time processes that occur on it will be condensed. But the law of diminishing utility comes into effect nonetheless. If you give me more and more names and do that at the expense of the “why,” because it’s “more efficient” that way, then you’ve lost any sort of meaning with it. Few people will click through the list and figure out if they want to follow those people as well.
I doubt this will impact anyone and prevent them from doing their own list come Friday, and that’s fine, really. I don’t intend to convince people, but merely explain why I won’t just “hit you back,” as it were. I prefer a high signal-to-noise ratio in my personal Twitter feed, despite what it may seem like sometimes. That’s why I skip the “Good Morning!” tweets and the (to me) meaningless “#FF” list.
Now, #WhiskeyFriday is all well and good, and #FridayReads, in spite of not being alliterative, is just fine by me. Like #MusicMonday (which I haven’t seen in quite some time), I am always ready for some new media (but not New Media) recommendations. I’ve also been told about #FridayRide, though I’ve never actually seen that one before. Hey, biking to work is always good (although for me, it might take about three or four hours each way).