When I first saw #FFS I genuinely thought it was a shortened version of “For F*ck Sake” as it was then followed by the name of a fellow Tweeter. I thought this showed somebody who had really annoyed you that week and that they should be avoided.
Then one day I was on somebody’s #FFs list and it said something like “Lovely Tweeter, go Follow”.
I couldn’t work out how that worked then, I was lovely but had peed somebody off.
But then the penny dropped and I realised that it meant “Follow Friday” and was a suggestion to that person’s fellow followers that I was somebody they might like to follow. So the exact opposite. That made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. What a lovely idea to suggest somebody who is either witty, famous, has inside info, links to competitions etc to fellow Tweeters who may not be aware of this secret person.
And it worked, I gained a few more followers. Lovely. There is no point being on Twitter if you don’t have a few followers.
Recently, however, I have come to dread Fridays and the whole concept of #FFS is making me ranty because it is descending into farce.
So I have come up with the MummyBarrow list of rules for the Follow Friday phenomenon and suggesting my own alternative.
First the rules. And you better start sticking to these, followers of mine, or I am coming after you with the naughty step:
Make sure YOU are following the person you are suggesting your followers follow. The times I have seen my name included and I think “ooh you sound interesting, who are you?” and then realise they are not following me. How can you recommend somebody you don’t follow? Nonsense. Stop it.
DO NOT. I repeat. DO NOT use an app to do this for you. There is an app called “Lazy Shout Out” and it can auto generate tweets for you with a heading of something like “Friends this week” and then can send out a tweet like this:
#FF PeopleWhoYouLike @boringperson @randombloke @randomwoman @someguyimetinabarontuesday (via @LzyShtOut)
Now I don’t want to sound ungrateful at this juncture but I am going to because I BLOODY HATE THIS APP. If you can’t even be bothered to write the Tweet yourself to recommend people to your fellow Tweeters then what is the point? You want your followers to follow these people but you can’t even be bothered to type it? Sod off.
Ditto lists. Tweets that have no dialogue but just say:
#FF @womanA @blokeB @someguy @thiswoman @anotherrandom @blokeonthetube @womanatbusstop
Why? Why should I follow them? It is your job to tell me why I should follow them. Are they funny? Are they famous? Have they got a cure for the common cold? Will they come round and do my ironing? You have to tell me why I need to follow them. Or don’t bother.
Ooh you got on a list YOU DON’T NEED TO THANK EVERYBODY ON IT. The other downside to these lists is that when @WomanA gets it she will then tweet everybody to say “thanks for the #FF”. I didn’t send you the bloody thing so what are you thanking me for? I don’t even know who you are. Just thank the person that sent it to you.
Resist the urge to show off. So somebody we don’t know has included you on their #FF list. And? Why do you need to RT (re-tweet) it and tell us all? All it says is “ooh look at me. Look at me”. I might barely know you (yes, contrary to popular opinion I do not know every single one of the 2000 people I follow, personally). So why should I care that you have been included on some other person’s list? Stop it. Nobody likes a show off.
Keep it simple. What we want to see is something along the lines of:
Please go follow @mummybarrow. She makes me smile. Gives property advice for free if you need it and blogs a bit too. #FFs
There. Short and to the point. It tells your followers why they should follow me. And it shows me that you actually care about me. And that means that I care about you a little bit more. And people that I care about get cake.
And so there endeth my list of rules for Friday.
I am now proposing a boycott of #FFs altogether. I am suggesting an alternative. I want to start #TTTs instead. Top Tweeter Thursday.
It will be a one person per tweet on a Thursday. Because at the moment #FFS really is making me revert to my original thinking.
Who is on board with #TTTs ?