TwitBlocking – Shocking New Twitter Trend Brings Me To My Knees


TweetIt from HubSpot

According to Twitter,  “Blocking someone instead of removing them means that not only do you not want to follow them, but you want to deny them the ability to follow or reply to you.”

followmebirdrd

Thanks to my dear friend, @williger and his blog,  I now know the Twitter community I belong to is “Reciprocal”. Think of it almost as a political party, yet all types of political philosophies exist within the Reciprocals. The main thing that holds us together is our undying belief that all things should ideally “even out”. We’re the “even Stevens” of Twitter. We prefer when people follow us back so the lines of communication are open. And, yes, we like to follow and be followed by lots of people! It keeps Twitter continually diverse and interesting beyond any dream! No, it’s not bad on the ego, either, or for business or social standing or SEO rankings or whatever each individual may hold as a goal.

Twitter-Down-Bird

You will also get the most interactivity from us in @replies and responses to your tweets. Reciprocals hold fast to the belief that all tweets and tweeters are created equal. You will even find the occasional celebrity in our midst: @AlRoker @Alyssa_Milano @Deepak_Chopra @SuzeOrmanShow @QBKILLA (Warren Sapp). These celebs may not always follow back, (one of the Reciprocals’ main binding traits), but they DO interact and talk with their tweeps which is much more important!

Twitter-Bird-Clouds

However, “all things being equal” goes both ways, just as in the Law of Attraction. Whether good, bad or in between, like attracts like in this world, so it should really come as no surprise that the same would hold true with blocking other Twitter accounts.

Somewhere along the line I felt encouraged to block accounts that I believed were set up for porn or spam. Whether the encouragement came from an outside app, Twitter itself or my own logic, it was there. I felt I was “doing my part to control spam”, a phrase so ingrained, I can’t believe it is part of my own machination. I began to block those accounts and recently, was made very aware of that what I was doing was also being done “reciprocally” to me.

twitblock

One of my favorite tweeps sent me a DM (direct message) about a site designed to separate spammers from real people, or “Bot or Not?” called TwitBlock.org His message was of an urgent nature. “You must do something about this!” My Twitter account had been blocked by 10 others! 10, yes TEN~! I was MORTIFIED to learn this! I had to do something, but what could I do? I went into a slight panic and started checking my friends who are most “like me” to see if I was alone and I was alone, until the next day~! I checked Friend A’s and Friend B’s accounts. Friend B had 6 blocking, while Friend A had 1. The numbers changed again by the next day!

Twitter-Birds

Friend A – Blocked by 3 TwitBlock users
That’s a pretty strong indication that this account is a nuisance.
So 3 people of 34,000 have blocked Friend A and that makes her a NUISANCE? No sirree, Bob!

Friend B – Blocked by 9 TwitBlock users
That’s a pretty strong indication that this account is a nuisance.
Friend B a nuisance? Um, I don’t THINK so! Friend B is NOTHING but Love & Light, spreading joy from one corner of the twitterverse to the next~! She also interacts with her tweeps! A nuisance? I think NOT!

@ModelSupplies – Blocked by 17 TwitBlock users
That’s a pretty strong indication that this account is a nuisance.

twitter birdawkward

Perhaps I am a nuisance. I should seek these people out and try to make amends! How can I find out WHO blocked me? What did I DO to make them block me? How can I change my behavior if I do not know what I have done wrong? How very depressing and powerless this knowledge can leave you! I am in search of an application that will reveal to me those who are blocking me, so I started with Twitter.

But how can all of these numbers have the same recommendation? How is 3, 9 and 17 in the same category? I began to wonder if this site is not its own nuisance. I can see the value in finding accounts that are up in the thousands, but what then? Block it? So that it can block you in all its spamminess? What if there are armies of people looking to destroy a certain account and just blocking feverishly? This all makes me uneasy and wreaks havoc in my lovely Twitter ecosystem. I have personally decided that I do not like this TwitBlocking site and advise against it. I think blocking accounts that are created for the purpose of spamming is still a pretty good idea, but I wanted to explore further…

Twitter-Birds-kick

When you Twitter search “Blocking me” you get a wide array of accounts with an even wider array of reasons for blocking people. Some of the reasons were purely that they were new accounts and did not know the person following them, so that person would be blocked! Blocked for being neighborly? Kicked out of the nest? Who ever heard of such a thing? This is a new Twitter phenomenon for me. I was ready to accept that my reciprocal community was likely “blocking me back”. Nevermind that those accounts are legitimate spam accounts, investigated by me personally and hand blocked. Did you also know there are applications that will block in bulk? That’s a pretty risky action to take, given human nature is to block someone who blocks you.

twittertired

I had the impulse, gut reaction to protect myself from these people, especially the newbies who are blocking because they have no concept of Twitter yet formed. In my world, this is very similar to a neutral or negative feedback on eBay or Etsy. On eBay, you would take the proactive position and block a buyer who looks as if they may leave less than positive feedback, thereby minimizing risk to your account and business. Twitter is not so different. We all have the instinct to protect ourselves. Some even sacrifice getting followers and networking to have protected updates.

Now I have checked again today, August 19, 2009. Today, those numbers have changed!

Friend A - Blocked by 14 TwitBlock users
Friend B – Blocked by 19 TwitBlock users
@ModelSupplies – Blocked by 35 TwitBlock users

tweeties-openeyes
These numbers are climbing way too fast signifying a trend. While I do not want to be someone who should be blocked, I wish I never heard of the TwitBlock website. I feel like I will visit it a few times every day, obsessively destroying my spirit for the moment. I am going to remove my wonderful friends’ names from this article so they do not have to feel the way I feel right now. I have decided to unblock all the accounts I have blocked –the true spam and porn accounts, because of the possibility of reciprocal blocking. I am not the “Twitter police”. I do not know where I got the idea that this was my civic duty or that it helped cut down on spam, but I no longer believe that my blocking makes a difference to Twitter. Hopefully some will reciprocate the unblocking…

Twitter-wink

Here’s a choice side note. Verified accounts are “exempt from spamhood” on this site, however, it still tells how many people have blocked the account! So, those of you wondering about @GuyKawasaki’s account or other high profile accounts can still be nosy. Verified accounts are still subject to snooping.
Let’s face it. Twitter is a fairly elitist community, usually in positive ways. Don’t expect it to be fair, but it is also a democratic setup based on choices. Twitter is aware of the TwitBlock site. The founders and friends of the founders of Twitter use it in playful banter.

twitblocked
We, as Reciprocals, have set ourselves up for immediate return of what we put out. We should not be surprised when the Twitter law of attraction brings us back exactly what we do to others. I am putting myself on the “block” for this article and truly fear what it might bring, but it has already brought lost sleep and unrest. (Yes, I’m that much of a Twitter geek.) I love Twitter so much, my relationships with others on the site have often kept me up at night for fun, friendship, pain and disagreements! But now I am marked as a spammer on my beloved social media channel. So I am changing my ways again and unblocking all of those 265 accounts I blocked for being porn or spam over the last year and a quarter. If I have ever appeared spammy to anyone, I sincerely apologize. Perhaps this was just the punch in the stomach I needed to get away from Twitter for a while and pay more attention to my business. We’ll see…

Twitter-Bird-Tweet

I urge you to think carefully before blocking someone. If I ever told you it was the right thing to do, I apologize. I no longer believe Twitter uses blocks as markers for spam accounts. If @ModelSupplies blocked you please watch for your account to be unblocked and I would greatly appreciate it if you reciprocated the gesture! Oddly, part of me hopes very few people read this article to find out about that site or the power contained within their block buttons.

UPDATE Approx 12 hours later: The blocked numbers continue to rise on these 3 accounts as a “monkey see, monkey do” kind of mentality sets in with the convenience of the “block” button within the program. The site has lowered the “spam value” of being blocked, but it looks like the damage is done. Friend A – 17; Friend B – 22; @ModelSupplies – 41~! But my Twitter Grader number has pulled back to the normal 100% even though Twitter has my follower numbers listed 20 thousand too low. Well, who could gather sufficient data under these circumstances? Sadly, none of that matters anyway as “monkey see, monkey do” continues to take precedence over everything. Consider how quickly this spread before you point your finger and laugh at us. The public visibility may not be the best thing. Perhaps the site should show only the number of other peoples’ accounts and not  how they got it. Limited viewing of other accounts, full access of your own? Remember, Friend A had 1 person blocking not 48 hours ago! That identity has NOT even been revealed here! It could happen to any of you. I urge you to appeal to this site for changes. Thanks for reading and thank you for your time.

UPDATE 2 Next day, NOW my number has jumped to 56 on that site~! Thanks to cheth for with  leaving a comment with alternate site tweetblocker.com that does not *seem* to reveal account information as much.

UPDATE 3 – Aug. 23, 2009 my number has jumped to 73 and seems to be holding since site builder and owner @TimWhitlock made revisions moving the block button to the bottom, not showing all information and changing up the verbiage describing each twerson.  Tim is a very nice guy who is extraordinarily talented and reacts very well to criticism even when beyond harsh. I know we are talking about our Twitter accounts, but imagine you spent hours creating a site to be thrust into public attention by Mashable before it was ready to go – and then another thousand by this site. In fact, he is still in testing stage with it. He has no plans to show who is blocking whom (what a nightmare that would be). He is not an evil genius, rather one of us, just trying to help clean up our Twitter community from the overflow of spam. Thank you, @TimWhitlock for hearing us and reacting in the best possible way! I am also happy to report that his site has become very useful for the original purpose intended! It DOES show spammers in all their spamminess. Of course, my account is not looking so hot, so anyone who would like to mark me or their friends as “not spam” it would be greatly appreciated. Please do not take this for granted or abuse it since it would be just as easy for Tim to remove this feature. For more information and comments, see Tim Whitlock’s blog. Thanks again!

Correction – it should say my tweet or update count is off by 20,000, not follower count.

twit-modelsupplies

More Articles from Anita Nelson at ModelSupplies
Help! I Don’t Show Up In Twitter Search!

TwitBlocking – Shocking New Twitter Trend Brings Me To My Knees

What It’s Like To Be #TwitterSuspended

5 “Get Followed Fast” Finds!
My Twitter Mosaic – Fabulous Tweeps!

Careful What You Tweet
How to Become Instantly RT-able (A Twitter Guide)

by Anita Nelson @ModelSupplies on Twitter – Follow me!

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44 responses to “TwitBlocking – Shocking New Twitter Trend Brings Me To My Knees

  1. “Great Article Anita” So full of information as always!….: )

  2. Thank you, Bella! This has had me up for nights~!

  3. Wow this is a brilliant post sweetheart, i am loving it..

    I honestly never thought of things in those terms. I also go through and unfollow and block porn and obvious spam accounts. The episode a few weeks ago that had me unfollowing over 500 accounts left me floored particularly since so many of them were legitimate accounts which are operated by real people, not porn, not spam.

    While I don’t check my numbers on a daily basis there are those “real” people who I do block because of the nature of their attitudes either towards me or towards other people – I really don’t mind being blocked by them. I would be unhappy to think that I was a nuisance Tweeter.. mind you, I go so fast and say so many completely irrelevant things I can quite understand how people would unfollow or block me LOL.. truly I do :)

    I wanted to share this post with my Twitter Updates but since I am presently still in Twitterjail (for almost 3 hours now GRRR) it won’t accept my post.. I will be back to make sure that it is tweeted into my stream.

    Valuable information well worth sharing..

    WTG darlin’… Thank you for the obvious effort put into this post…

    Much love and respect to you x

    • Thank you, @Donnette~!! for your insightful comment! I was also surprised by the last suspensions seeing many disappear that I knew were real people. That’s part of the reason I am giving up blocking for the simple unfollow. I am not sure it matters which actions we take as long as we do not follow or RT a spammer.
      Love & Light~!
      x0x
      Anita @ModelSupplies

  4. newsmediaimages

    A wonderful piece, well done to you. I have never blocked anyone and I always follow them back. I’ve got around 1600 followers and have only been on Twitter for 3 months. I haven’t used one of those robots yet and I love being here.
    I agree with you how can the odd tweet you don’t like or agree with constitute a nuisance? I don’t quite know all the in’s and outs of Twitter in terms of the rules and regulations so I do unto others what I’d like to be done to me. Be nice!

    • That’s AWESOME~! You ARE Twitter~! Please look around this blog for a few more articles to help, like “RT-able” = ) Please let me know if there is anything you would like me to write about!
      Thank you so much!
      x0x
      Anita @ModelSupplies

  5. well it is nice to know I haven’t been blocked, but this generated name I don’t understand. It is a family name and very real!

    • Yes! That’s the problem when a bot is judging whether someone in a bot~! It has no reasoning skills~!! Congrats on your NonSpam~!!
      Thank you!
      x0x
      Anita @ModelSupplies

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  8. Nice post tweeted about it, but thankfully my account looks all fine.. there is one more website similar to this – tweetblocker.com/

    • WOW~! Thank you! TweetBlocker.com looks like a MUCH better site~! Thank you SO MUCH for tweeting the post & Congrats on being a real person~! lol
      x0x
      Anita @ModelSupplies

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  11. Great article and information. I will not be visiting these sites as I too would become obsessed with the number I don’t think in my time on twitter I have blocked more than a few, but I have found myself blocked once or twice, doesn’t feel good. The best way to try and rid twitter of spammers is to send the username to @spam on twitter.

    • I COMPLETELY agree~! It really only hurts my feelings in the end and I would rather not know. Thanks so much for your comment!
      x0x
      Anita @ModelSupplies

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  14. Anita,

    I also am getting permanently damaged by this awful site insinuating that I’m a spammer and a nuisance. My blocked accounts are adding up at an increasing rate like yourself. Last night – I got zero sleep. To be honest – my anger is rising though I’ve tried eliminate anger towards others… I find very hard to do in this situation.

    What this site has done is cause a “snowball blocking effect” of legitimate users who may have received reciprocating blocks or often from new users who used to block people instead of unfollow users they didn’t wish to follow anymore. (This morning I also unblocked virtually all accounts I had blocked like you had done). Yes – some may be legitimate blocks from something we may have said (or from a few cat quotes I did one day). This awful site is magnifying the mob mentality and larger accounts like ours who have thousands of followers pay the severest penalty because we will likely have more blocks due to the numbers game.

    I don’t see any urgency from the owner of the site to correct the problems and the falsehood accusations continue IMO. Our only chance to stop the bleeding is to maybe have masses of twitblock users identify us as “not spam” but then we actually are encouraging people to log-in to their site.

    I sincerely hope I can sleep tonight. I have worked hard on developing my Twitter account only too see this site starting to tear it apart, ruining my reputation and potentially putting out accounts in danger with Twitter suspensions.

    We have a common good friend in @Williger ( I just left him a phone message to stop mentioning the Twitblock site)

    Take care & let’s hope for the best.

    • It will get better! Thank you so much for your support. I think it’s going to be ok now, Larry =)
      For the record, the only thing @williger has to do with this post is coining the term “Reciprocals” on his blog or YouTube one day. It really stuck with me! I got a kick out of it and wanted to share it with others making sure he got full credit for the term =)
      AWESOMENESS~!!!
      Thank you for commenting, everyone!
      x0x
      Anita @ModelSupplies

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