O Twitter How Thou Can Annoy!

My new Twitter profile.


We all have pet peeves.  Behaviors and actions that annoy or irritate us more than they should.  When we witness these pet peeves in action they get us, well, peevish.

Thus the name.

There is no medium that fully showcases pet peeves quite like Twitter.  There are absolutely dozens of ways we can irritate and annoy each other when space is so limited.

So to get the annoyance ball rolling, I present 5 of my biggest Twitter pet peeves.  In no particular order I give you:

1. The All-Around Nice Guy

You’ve seen the bios on Twitter that read like this: “Social media consultant, writer, speaker and all-around nice guy” or “I’m an editor and journalist and generally a nice person.”

As my dear mother used to tell me “Self praise is no praise.”

Telling people who you’re a “nice” or a “good” guy or gal falls into this category.  Being nice isn’t an attribute you can present to yourself like a participation trophy in youth soccer.  Why?  Because it’s not something individuals can accurately judge.  Your overall “niceness” is determined by other people and is strictly the result of your actions.

In fact, I find that people who self-identify as “nice” generally are not.

2. Shiny, Happy Family People

What is the deal with the plethora of people who feel the need to tell people that they are parents – and really good ones who put their kids and their families first?  Why is this an important piece of information?

It is even worse when they do that and tell everyone that they “are happily married to…” and then provide the Twitter handle for their spouse.

I find these people aren’t really telling others that family comes first, but reminding themselves of this fact.

3. Followers of Jesus

Oddly, there are few followers of Odin on Twitter.

4. The Passive-Aggressive Boast

You’ve seen the tweets – “Just ran a half-marathon and tweaked my knee. Hope I’m going to okay for this weekend’s iron man triathlon” or “My agent called me with a wonderful opportunity while I was out to lunch with @NotablePersonality. Can’t believe I missed the call!”  This is groan-inducing bragging with a meager attempt to disguise it as information sharing.

At cocktail parties this was once called boorish behavior.  There’s way too much of it on Twitter.

5. The Any-Photo But Me

I have a former colleague that used a photograph of a baboon for his Twitter profile.  I repeat, a baboon.  Unfortunately, I never got to ask him why, but it never ceased to confound me.  He used the account for professional purposes as well.

There’s no shortage of people unclear on the concept of the profile picture – which there to show people what you look like.  There are a lot people using profile photographs of their pet dogs and cats.  Others using photos of their children (could that be considered child abuse?), and still others using avatars of celebrities or cartoon characters.

I never follow these people back.  Call me nuts, but I like to connect with people – not cocker spaniels.


Wow, it felt good to get that off my chest.  Now it’s your turn.  What are your biggest pet peeves with Twitter?


4 Responses to “O Twitter How Thou Can Annoy!”

  1. “Loving dad of fantastic kids” is the same as being an apathetic, distracted dad of average brats. Saying you are “passionate” about whatever it is you do for a living means you are a good bullshit artist. If you are a “junkie” of whatever sort, don’t boast: it means you suffer a severe personality imbalance.

  2. These suggestions are worthy of the GOLD standard. Thanks, Tim!

  3. Great Ideas… Number 3 is a great force…sharing what you have learned is a great education…Thanks for sharing…Greg Avery

  4. Thanks Greg and may Zeus be with you.

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