Twitter Suggesting New People to Follow, How They Should Do It

January 17, 2009
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Have you seen this?  I just found out about it a few minutes ago.  If you go to your twitter homepage and click on “find people,” you will see a tab for “suggested users.”

This is an interesting feature to add, however the way it stands right now, there is not a lot of relevancy that […]

Have you seen this?  I just found out about it a few minutes ago.  If you go to your twitter homepage and click on “find people,” you will see a tab for “suggested users.”

twitter suggested followers

This is an interesting feature to add, however the way it stands right now, there is not a lot of relevancy that is being put into calculating these new suggested people to follow.  Among the people twitter suggested that I follow are:

  • Britney Spears
  • Shaq
  • Jet Blue
  • ESPN
  • NPR

I’d actually like to now what twitter is using to calculate these suggested people to follow, where did these recommendations come from?  Is this just a default list that everyone else sees as well?

How They Should Do It

Why not allow users to manipulate variables that they look for in people to follow.  For example, I want to follow someone who loves chess yet is also interested in social media and technology; can twitter recommend me such a person?  I’m sure they can.

How great would it be if you can have a little interface that let’s you customize search fields, you input the data you want and then twitter sends you a list of people who match your query.  I should be able to follow every other “jacob” out there if I wanted to, or every other person who is interested in chess, or bamboo carving (kidding).  Recommending someone just for the sake of a recommendation doesn’t do much good.  Let’s say that I was having a conversation with you about laptops and then all of a sudden I say “you know who I recommend for under water basket weaving?…”  That’s what the twitter recommendation engine feels like right now.

However, if I had the ability to customize my recommended followers I would probably be much more likely to follow and interact with them, don’t you think?

What do you think about twitter and they’re recommended follower feature, would you like to be able to customize this option to find people YOU are interested in?

Thanks for reading!


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