One of my all-time favourite social media sites is of course Twitter. I love everything about it. I like how it’s simple to use, straight to the point and it can be super engaging. There are some truly amazing individuals and brands on that app who make the experience incredibly enjoyable. I like how you can tailor your very own little community of like-minded people simply by following. However, sometimes you might find yourself following someone and then hovering over the unfollow button. So the question is, is unfollowing acceptable? The short answer is yes! Ultimately you can unfollow people as you like but if you’re after some justification on the topic, here are three reasons why the act of unfollowing on Twitter is perfectly fine.
1. You aren’t engaging
One of the biggest things about social media is the name, being social. If you aren’t engaging with the person you’re following and vice versa, is there really any point in following each other? Maybe your or their content has changed and you no longer have a common interest to interact over? or perhaps they’re just straight up not responding to your tweets at all anymore? Now let me tell you, I’m all about that social interaction on Twitter. If someone is just straight up not interacting with me anymore I think to myself: “What exactly is the point in me following this person?” With the average Twitter user said to be following 350 accounts surely you want accounts that are worthy of following?
2. You don’t enjoy their content
Sometimes you follow someone and then you start to notice the odd tweet that gives you a serious case of eye roll. I know I’ve spotted tweets like this in my feed before but I like to remind myself that we all have different views and as humans, it’s very unlikely that we’ll agree on everything in life. In these cases, I opt for the classic scroll on method. However, if I find someone’s content very unpleasant, or I find myself repeatedly scrolling I then recognise that it’s time to virtually break up.
Personally, I have a few things that’ll have me reaching for the unfollow button quicker than Jack Flash. These include the likes of racism, sexism, ableism and harassment. Basically, if you’re being a nasty pasty, I’m guaranteed to unfollow. Why? Well not only do I not want to read that sort of thing, but I also don’t want to be associated with it either. It’s pretty much as simple as that.
Unfollowing is great for ridding your feed of bad eggs
Recently during the UK general election, I spotted a lot of downright nasty comments and personal attacks on the bird app. Thankfully the majority of people I follow are a bunch of extremely good eggs. They can be a vocal bunch who stand up for what they believe in and rightly so. I’m all for you standing up for what you believe in, even if I don’t necessarily share your enthusiasm or even your views.
However, what I don’t believe in is actively going out of your way to find people to harass or troll. This is something I spotted with a couple of accounts. So what did I do? Well, I unfollowed. It’s as simple as that. Did I do it because I was utterly offended? Nope. I just didn’t want to be associated with that kinda thing or have to view it. Quite frankly it just gets in the way of the quality content.
You should never feel guilty for unfollowing an account
That being said, if you do find something utterly offensive you shouldn’t think twice or feel guilty about unfollowing. If that sort of content spoils your Twitter experience, get rid of it. Your feed is your feed. If you aren’t happy about something being on your feed, you should never feel guilty about eliminating it. Plus if it really grinds your gears, gets to you or you’re fed up to your back teeth of it, there’s always the mute function and the block button. However, I’ll chat more in detail about those features another day.
Ultimately what I’m trying to say is that your social media experience should be enjoyable. Sure you’re going to encounter Twitter trolls and tweets that you don’t necessarily agree with. However, it’s entirely up to you who you follow and unfollow. Despite what the trolls say, you’re not a snowflake. You’re a normal person who can do whatever you want because it’s your account.
It’s also worth noting that if you find yourself utterly bored of someone’s content and you’re not engaging, that’s also a valid reason to unfollow. I mean it makes space for more of the kinda content that you want to see. Honestly? If you want to unfollow someone, it’s ultimately your decision. My only advice regarding unfollowing? Please don’t be one of those people who participate in shady Twitter tactics like the follow/unfollow method. Twitter is about connecting with people. If you’re serious about social, treat people like human beings, not numbers.
3. Your feed is being spammed
When it comes to the top 10 most annoying things on Twitter one thing that would definitely make the list would be feed spamming. By this, I mean those people who very, very rarely post their own content but constantly fill your feed with retweets from a massive variety of accounts. I mean there’s no consistency in content, it’s just like a hot mess that hits you all at once. It pushes everyone else’s content that you actually care about out of the way and you end up scrolling for what feels like an eternity to get past.
Don’t get me wrong, sometimes you can find a diamond in the rough like a quality meme or a wholesome story. That being said, most of this content tends not to peak my interests. So what do I do? I unfollow. However, if the person does occasionally post their own content that you are interested in, you can always hop over to their profile, tap the three little dots and hit “turn off retweets” This means that you don’t miss their content but you can clean up your feed so that you don’t miss out on everyone else’s tweets.
Tailor your Twitter experience to your interests
Twitter is an incredible place but it’s only that kind of place when you see the things that you are interested in. To get the most out of Twitter you’ve got to be following and engaging with the right people. Taking matters into your own hands and tailoring your experience by choosing who you follow is one of the ways that you can do this and unfollowing those who ruin that experience is no different.