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Mark Atwood
Answering strangers questions on Twitter
Twitter has a feature where I can get public tweets that contain keywords of interest to me.

One of the keywords I watch for is "OAuth"

On occasion, someone tweets a question I can answer.

But because they are not following me on twitter, I can't just send back a direct message.

And when I look at their page at http://twitter.com/username, they havn't seen fit to include an IM address.

And when I look at other pages they have linked to themselves, there is still no IM address, and often no email address.

So they've asked a question, I have a good answer for them, and I have no good way to get it back to them.

This is annoying, it's a piece of friction that interferes with the world getting smarter...
5 comments or Leave a comment
dossy From: dossy Date: March 10th, 2008 07:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
Uh, send them a (public) reply, using "@username message" ... that's the Twitter way.

Yes, some people might feel uncomfortable speaking publically--but, Twitter's success depends on making people do it.
zonereyrie From: zonereyrie Date: March 10th, 2008 10:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
But if they're not following you, do they even see it? I thought the @user twits only worked if the 'user' is following the person making the comment. If some random yahoo posts @megazone I didn't think I'd see it.
dossy From: dossy Date: March 10th, 2008 11:31 pm (UTC) (Link)
You'll see it if you use the Twitter web interface and click the "replies" tab, yes. Not sure how other Twitter clients handle it.
zonereyrie From: zonereyrie Date: March 10th, 2008 10:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
I run into that elsewhere too, especially on LJ when someone posts a question by has their LJ set to only allow replies from friends, and they don't have any email or IM in their profile. I could blindly try the default email address LJ gives them, that's about it.
awfief From: awfief Date: March 11th, 2008 01:58 am (UTC) (Link)
I had this same problem. It's why I stopped following the "MySQL" keyword.
5 comments or Leave a comment