Not all tweeters need a smartphone, as our picture reveals
Barely a day passes without many mentions of Twitter and 'tweeting' in the media. And you'll have noticed how this particular social network was propelled onto a higher plane during the London 2012 Olympics, with most of the competitors using Twitter as their primary means of communicating with fans and the wider world. Twitter is a key cog in the booming social networking phenomenon and a short and pithy alternative to Facebook.
What is Twitter?
Twitter is a means of sharing your thoughts via your computer or mobile phone. Users post messages - called Tweets – using no more than 140 characters. Or in Twitter’s own words, it is: "A social networking and microblogging site."
Why do I need Twitter?
“I already use Facebook. Why do I want Twitter?” The Twitup blog uses the analogy of Facebook as a means of communicating with friends, with Twitter like stepping onto a stage to address an audience. Twitter is great for homing in on people who share a cause or interest, and for swapping ideas. One Tweet can replace an email to dozens of people.
How do I use Twitter?
To set up a Twitter account go to www.twitter.com and choose a user name and password. Enter a few personal details and you can begin tweeting. You will be known to the world as #username.
To tweet, go to your Twitter page at www.twitter.com where you will see a box marked “What’s happening?”.
Your Twitter page is meanwhile not the only means of Tweeting. You could equally use am approved Twitter Tool such as Tweetdeck or Twirl - or an app on your mobile phone - as well as Instant Messaging.
How do I find Followers?
There is little point in Tweeting if no-one can see you – you need Followers. Adding Followers differs from adding Facebook friends in that it is not necessarily mutual. You might want to add some friends and family members initially - or maybe celebrities you admire. You can locate them by using the search facility on the Twitter home page.
It is considered good etiquette to follow someone back when they follow you. Thus following other people can be a good way of building your own following. You can also message people directly by typing @username.
Finding followers can be quite an art – www.tweeternet.com contains links for online guides to boosting your following.
How do I view Tweets?
Tweets from yourself and those you follow will appear in chronological order on your Twitter page.
Finally, a note of caution. Twitter is powerful and messages spread quickly. Be careful about posting personal information.
have a look at www.tweeternet.com or “Twitter in Plain English” on YouTube for a basic video introduction.