Online: What Your Bio Says About You

Twitter profiles reveal some interesting things about a person, who somebody follows can reveal their interests, political leanings and who their favourite celebrities are. 

The thing most central to a persons Twitter profile is their biography section. This always reveals to me how seriously the person takes themselves, whether they put their work above everything else, and if they are interested in making themselves look cultured, intelligent or political.


Many bio’s describe the Tweeter as a food person, or a wine drinker, or even more bizarrely a ‘raconteur’, or the one I love the most a ‘entrepreneur’. Most people who use this describer seems to be a freelancer or just starting their own business, in my opinion, an entrepreneur is Bill Gates or Richard Branson, most other people are either unemployed  own a business or work for somebody else. It seems like a describer someone uses to pad out their profile, and either make themselves feel important, or give an impression of importance to others. It also seems to ring hollow when you find out the enterprise they oversee is a non-existent company they brand themselves under.

Another interesting thing about Twitter bios is that it exposes people who really wrap themselves and their personal image around their work. I find those silly disclaimers “RT’s not endorsements” and “opinions not those of my employer” entertaining. Not only do these no hold up if you get intro trouble for Tweeting something, or for using social media against a companies rules, but it gives an impression that your Tweets are somehow more important than others, and that you should be held to a different standard. I don’t get it.

When I look at someones Twitter page, I want to know about a person, their interests, location, what they are going to Tweet about, and whether it is worth following them. I don’t need to know your employer, or how many countries you have travelled to, or what your socioeconomic status is. Just make it interesting, and give me the basics, the space isn’t a CV, or a dating profile. Use it wisely, or like me, don’t use it at all and let the Tweets speak for themself.

Follow me: @mikebeckham (or don’t if my lack of bio worries you)

Twittered Out?

Are you like me? Sick of all the media attention Twitter has been receiving lately? It’s so over the top, you’d think its the next sliced bread.

I have been a user since 2007, and only now over the past few weeks has it gotten any attention and I am completely over hearing about. I’ll continue using it, as it is useful and fun but I don’t need to be told by news anchors who know nothing about it, how fantastic it is.

John C. Dvorak a noted technology columnist has written an on point article about why it is useful, and not just a fad. It may be a fad with the media – however in the long term for end users it could be a long term service.

‘The Nine Ways to Use Twitter’ is the article and two of my favourites are…

Public Address System: Because I produce a couple of streaming podcasts that have no official start times, I use Twitter to announce the fact that a streaming show is going to begin. It’s a bit like using Twitter as a public address system.

Crowd-sourcing: I also use it to poll people and for crowd-sourcing information. I can ask my Twitter followers a question that I cannot find the answer to, and within seconds someone will know the answer or have a link to it.

Of course for some of these to work, you need a lot of followers. Otherwise its just a nice way of keeping in touch. Just like Facebook, but for those of us who don’t want application invites.

Need someone else to follow? @mikebeckham is the way to go…