Occupational thoughts

Covering life on the home front.

Twitter marketing

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Here’s another Twitter-bashing post which coincides with my using Twitter a lot more than I did before. Of course I’m not using it as a micro-blogging service like what it’s meant for but that’s a story for another time.

My new reason to dislike Twitter is the rise of annoying Spam. Yesterday when complaining that the Xbox was broken I wrote the message “Xbox broken again”.
Because my Twitter posts are redirected to Facebook I got some questioning and sympathetic comments from Andriy and Nate. And then at 3:11 this morning it was announced that James Muddyman was following me. Out of interest I went over to see who he was, he had done an @reply to me with the message “xbox on the fritz? http://www.electronicwarran… can help you out.”

Again out of interest I followed his link, it took me to a commercial website which sold warranties for electronic goods. Then I noticed that his tweet had come from TwitterHawk, my interest has been severely piqued by this point and I take a gander around to see what it’s all about. On the press page I find 3 articles debating whether this site generates Spam or not.

What TwitterHawk does is search for keywords and generate @replies based on those keywords. I assume it found the words Xbox and Broken so it automatically posted a reply with a link to that website which sells warranties. So to boil it down even further: it sends unsolicited messages which mean to sell products targeted at you. Wikipedia defines spam as:
“The abuse of electronic messaging systems (including most broadcast media, digital delivery systems) to send unsolicited bulk messages indiscriminately.”

Some users in the past have set up an account with one tweet containing a link and set about following as many people as they can. Oh some media executive prick can sit in his office smiling confidently about how he’s bringing marketing to Web 2.0; in reality he’s alienating his audience with invasive slimy disguised marketing which will ultimately drive people away from his products or even Twitter itself.

Following this advice, I’m going to post a tweet full of kewords and see how many automated @replies I attract. Wish me luck!

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Written by Pierre

September 6, 2009 at 10:10

Posted in technology

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