Twitter seems to be working hard on the user experience and the new announcement made by Twitter in its recent blog post says it all. According to Othman Laraki, Director, Growth and International, Twitter would be making new tailor-made suggestions on whom to follow to new as well as existing users.
A much-needed feature that was highlighted by me as one of the missing links from Twitter. Practically everyone in this world wouldn’t like to follow celebrities just to know where they are posing for the shutterbugs. People today are on Twitter to also find and converse with like-minded people. Say for example if I am traveling to a new place then I would love to make some new friends in that place and make my travel much more exciting. So in this scenario, it would be useful if Twitter suggests such profiles to me. Interestingly, Twitter is testing out the same feature in select countries.
Suggestions for new users:
The latest change will allow first time users on Twitter to see tailored suggestions, which would be a list of Twitter accounts. Adjacent to the recommended Twitter accounts, you would find a list of tweets on the right of the recommended accounts. I am believing that this will give the new Twitter users an idea whom to follow and whom not to.
But don’t you think suggesting Twitter accounts on the user’s interest will make things more relevant and exciting. Let’s say a woman who is interested in pottery wants to join Twitter. Wouldn’t it be great if Twitter shows a list of accounts having the same interest from the same city? Hopefully, with time Twitter adopts this strategy.
Suggestions for existing users:
Existing users would also see tailored suggestions under the section “Who to Follow”. Presently “Who to Follow” is giving me suggestions based on my Twitter community, it is showing a list of people who are being followed by people whom I follow. But this is going to change as the tailored suggestions would now also be based upon visits made to the website in the Twitter ecosystem. In other words, Twitter would track your activity and suggest you people depending upon the activities you perform in other websites in the last 10 days.
Twitter has taken care of your privacy and if you don’t want Twitter to track any of your activities then you can do so. Twitter is supporting Do Not Track (DNT) and if you have a browser that supports DNT like Firefox then enable it in your settings and Twitter won’t track any of your activity.
Additionally, if new users on Twitter would like to opt out then you can do so by stopping “Tailor Tweet” option. Current users can do the same by going to the account settings and clicking on “Personalization”. This would provide an option where you can stop Twitter from tracking your activity.
The recent move is commendable from the point that Twitter is working on improving the user experience. I like the move but I am confused why Twitter is trying to track activities and then making suggestions on whom to follow. Chances are that people wouldn’t like it or most of them might not be aware as the option is on by default. It’s good that Twitter has provided all options of security but it could easily suggest people based on interest. I think taking the interest route would not only give better results but would keep the security thing at bay.
So are you allowing your Twitter account to be tracked or would you ignore this update?