There’s a weird phenomena on Twitter (and probably other social media sites) -the pico-celebrity. This SM personality exist a little bit like that biosphere in the great Far Side cartoon where a man is looking in on his aquarium and a giant is looking into the man’s house and an alien is looking into the galaxy with them both etc. A small reminder that we are only great and grand in our own heads.
Twitter and SM in general is a game of numbers, the follow, the follow back. Among all this are various personality types. The follow/follow backers and then forget about it (that’s me if you’re wondering), the follow/drop follow a few days later when they hope the person they followed isn’t looking, the ask for follows but never follow back (usually a user at a higher follower number in the thousands but for all intents not someone anyone would be following if not for this weird SM milieu) and then the true celebrity who only follows what they want and can’t possibly follow back everyone. There are probably a few shoot offs of these standard types but you get the idea.
One of my favorite laments is the pico-celebrity confused about users who follow and then drop when they don’t follow back. Why oh why – it is asked. I only follow those that I’m interested in and I don’t care if they follow back they say. Let me, no BS mom type, clear things up for those confused by this – they’re lying. Somewhere in the stratosphere their accounts pulled ahead and soon they found there are those who won’t question why they’re not being followed back. They became pico-celebrities and they like it.
There are of course outliers like, Twitter Jail. And also there are alot of bot and/or troll accounts and that can explain some disparity in the follow/unfollow rate. But when the ratio starts to get too far apart the whole pico-celeb is probably playing out.
I find they rarely offer much in the way of content or real value. I follow Dr Pimple Popper because it’s like a train wreck I can’t look away from. She is a true celebrity account not because she is a celebrity but she is providing real and strong content daily. As a result the demand for her follow far exceeds what she can reasonably follow back. There are many others like her, non celebrities, with some off the charts content. I have yet to encounter a pico-celebrity account with a similar content pull. Mostly it’s just a random account with marginal to poor content and an inexplicably high follower to follow rate. It doesn’t even really allow for the aspirational follow of ‘wow if I follow this account I too might be_____(fill in the blank)’.
So in the end when I see these accounts throw out leading and predatory questions like why do people follow and then unfollow when they aren’t followed back, I know they are setting up exactly those proactive followers (who are crazy enough to entertain these questions) to get sliced a little for not being as altruistic as they are. For not following simply because they want to follow regardless of follow back. It’s a game and I don’t play at games where the rules slide depending on the player and you shouldn’t either. It’s a lose/lose situation.
We’re here for the interaction, for the business or creative exposure, and therefore to a good extent for the mutual follows. There’s no shame in that. That’s why you see radio stations and many other accounts like that say they follow everyone. It’s a win/win when they do. They get exposure and so do their followers. Follow, there’s no harm unless it’s clearly a fake account or one spewing awfulness or something of that ilk – then, of course, don’t follow. Mute what you don’t want to hear. These lists are useful. It’s manageable and worthwhile if you’re serious about your business.
So on that note, if I don’t follow you give a holla because I’m all about the follow/follow back. As they say, you can’t knock the hustle.