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Colin Devroe

Photographer. Podcaster. Blogger. Reverse Engineer.

Jack Baty on follower counts

Jack Baty:

Years ago on Twitter, I would use follower counts as an indicator of authority or perhaps as a way to gauge someone’s impact on a community or topic. With so many followers, he or she must have useful or interesting things to say, right? That probably wasn’t a great way to think about follower counts even then, but it worked as often as not.

I quit Twitter with thousands of followers. Many of which I’d say were bots. Accounts with millions of followers also have a huge percentage of bots following them. I restarted my account from scratch and now only have dozens. Follower count means nothing about the person behind it.

Reminds me of this 2014 post.

Stop caring about follower counts

Matt Gemmell on what has changed for him in 2014 — mainly, that he no longer worries about things like stats, follower counts, and numbers. He now writes for him. But he used to.

I’d second-guess tweets and even articles, based on what I thought would appeal to my readers – who were mostly programmers. My online presence was essentially a professional one, under a personal name. It never sat well with me.

If you write for an online magazine or media outlet you need to obsess over such things. But if you have a personal blog or Twitter account, you should really stop.

I can’t tell you how many Twitter followers I’ve lost due to my propensity for unfollowing every account a few times a year and starting over. Some people don’t get it, others take it personally. I’ve learned to stop caring and do what I want to do. I try to explain, through my blog here, why I choose to shake things up from time-to-time and if that isn’t good enough for people, so be it.

And, as far as what I write here on my blog. I have never written for stats. Not here on my personal blog. This place is mine.

Back to Gemmell:

I may bore you. I may offend you. You might unsubscribe, or unfollow. Reading is brutally democratic, after all. If you choose to go, it’s been a pleasure. And if you choose to stay, well… that truly matters to me.

His entire piece is a worth a read.