One of the main uses for social networking websites is to enable people to post their thoughts instantly. No social networking site takes full advantage of speed and immediacy more than Twitter, which exploded onto the social media scene in 2006.
Twitter provides a quick fix for celebrity gossip, friend updates and important news stories. Unlike with many other social media sites, there is no age requirement to start a Twitter account. In fact, this service caters to a teenage crowd with its ease of use and endless supply of information about friends, favorite artists and upcoming events. Few social network sites have been able to capture a worldwide audience, but Twitter has gained international popularity.
Twitter is a simple social network to pick up and start using. The Home tab shows you a feed of constantly updating tweets from people you follow. When you sign in, you'll need a nickname that begins with the @ sign. This is called a handle and will be used in other subscribers' tweets if they tweet directly to you. The Connect tab filters the busy feed and shows you interactions and mentions. This feature allows you to see when people reference your Twitter account and gives you a list of new followers.
Twitter is meant to be used on the go. The typical Twitter user tweets from a smartphone rather than a personal computer. Thankfully, the mobile app for this social media service is even easier to use than the Twitter site. The advantage of using Twitter on a smartphone is that you can update your account immediately. When you take a quick picture with your phone, for instance, you can upload it instantly and add a comment to complete the tweet.
You can even add short personal videos to your Twitter feed. You can also add links to YouTube videos or personal websites and news feeds. Local businesses looking for a way to increase their reach can take advantage of quick updates, creating loyalty in their followers and rewarding them with coupon links and promotional codes through their tweets.
The profile page for each user is so simple that it appears to be a weakness for this social network, but it actually works in its favor. Your profile page, or homepage, includes a profile picture and cover photo. You can add your location, website and short bio. Each of the items in a Twitter profile is optional.
Your Discover feed shows you news stories that either have been tailored to your interests or were tweeted by those you follow. If you are looking to be well versed in pop culture and current issues, you can find the Trends feed. This feed shows both keywords that have been used recently in Twitter and hashtag keywords, and follow the conversation regarding the most popular news stories. Twitter has taken the pound sign, called a hashtag, and claimed it as its own. However, you don’t have to use a hashtag. You can easily search Twitter with just a keyword.
Twitter has a number of security features. If you choose to add your email address to your notification settings, you have the option to allow others to find you by that email address. You can also set your Twitter account to private, which means no one you haven’t authorized to follow you can view any of your tweets.
Twitter is one of the easiest-to-use social network sites you can experience. The mobile app gives you instant and constantly updated information. In a matter of seconds, you will know exactly what the rest of the world is interested in, and you can always join the conversation.