Nicolas Magand on the internet

Engagement editor, critique enthusiast, hypertexter.

My name is Nicolas Magand and I live in Paris, France. I work as a social media and engagement editor at the Global Editors Network, a non-profit aimed at promoting innovation and sustainability in the news industry. Here I blog mostly about tech and media, but many other topics can face my enthusiasm.

Do not get lost following anybody on Twitter

I like to consider Twitter as the pulse of the Internet, or its nervous system.

If links and then images are naturally a big part of it, Twitter is mostly about people, about the communication source.

As a Twitter user, you are defining yourself through the tweets you are posting, but also through the people you follow. With time, you learn to know them, what they like, what they don't like. You learn to understand better their intentions behind a tweet, their sarcasm, their lives. You make friends, you unfollow people, you create a valuable interest-based network that is way more human and familiar than any custom news website.

This is precisely what I love about Twitter.

You get to chose who you want to follow and get to know. You also are an equal part of the conversation you're building.

That is why I never followed more than 300 people. If you don't count the automated feeds (which I recently moved over to Feedbin), I think you can have around 200 people in your timeline without too much noise, without diluting the reasons why you follow people in the first place.

The more people you follow, the more difficult it is to keep track on what each and everyone of them is sharing. People become strangers, you will miss the context of their tweets. Twitter becomes less human, less fun.

If you're using services like Nuzzel, encouraging you to follow more people to get it more powerful, be careful. Use it as an extra service. Keep on coming to Twitter, keep a list of 200 people you like, they are the real long term value of Twitter; you don't want to become one those guys following more than three thousand people, missing the whole story.

You can compare this to magazines subscriptions. The more you get, the less you read. Chose wisely the ones you want, and take time reading them. It will be a much more satisfying experience.