Twitter is becoming increasingly mainstream, but it’s easy for us Tweeters to forget how mind-boggling the concept was when we first got on board. So here is a quick reference of terms in alphabetical order to get any new user started and understanding the jargon. For readers with Twitter experience, feel free to add your own definitions in our comments!
CoTags. A strategy for added accountably and personalization to corporate Twitter feeds. A CoTag is a short personalized sign off for each message.The CoTweet platform offers the ability to manage CoTags by default. CoTags should be defined in either the bio, or on the background image to be effective.
CoTweet. A web-based platform to manage multiple users and multiple Twitter accounts/feeds. This platform may be used on any computer with Internet access and may be used to manage other social media platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn.
Followers. The Twitter account holders who receive your commentary in their stream.
Following. The Twitter accounts who you are following and whose tweets appear in your personal Twitter stream.
Handle. The ‘username’ or ‘nickname’ selected by the user. It must be unique and a maximum of 15 characters. It is displayed with an @ preceding it.
Hashtag. The community-driven practice of tagging an individual tweet by using a hash in front of the tag. Example: Putting #oilspill or #BP in a tweet about the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill will add your tweet to a stream of messages in that conversation. Hashtags allow a community to easily seek out and stream commentary on a particular subject.
Home Feed. This is the stream of commentary coming from users who you follow. It can be seen only by you.
HootSuite. A web based platform to manage multiple users and multiple Twitter accounts/feeds. This platform may be used on any computer with Internet access and may be used to manage other social media platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn.
Lists. Creating lists is a method of organizing Twitter users into categories. Lists may either be public or private. Public lists are viewable by other Twitter users who may decide to follow your list by subscribing to it.
Mentions. A public message or comment directed to another user. In normal circumstances, mentions should be acknowledged either publicly or privately.
Microblog. Only Twitter is often referred to as a microblog because it allows people to update their status using 140 characters or less.
Page. Similar to a Facebook Page or LinkedIn profile, it is the personal home base of any user on Twitter. Account holders can customize their pages with short bios (160 characters), add a personalized or branded image/photo/avatar, add one URL to another resource offering more information about them and also add a background image or skin.
Personal Feed. This is the stream of commentary coming from each individual Twitter user. Their Twitter feed can be found on this page.
ReTweet (RT). A ReTweet is a tweet forwarded by another person on to their own followers thereby spreading the message to cascading networks.
Reply. A public message directed to another user, often asking a question or making a comment in response to a message. In normal circumstances, replies should be acknowledged either publicly or privately.
Tweet. A message of 140 characters or less sent via Twitter. It is a public message, broadcast to your followers and searchable by any Twitter user.
TweetDeck. A downloadable program to manage multiple users and multiple Twitter accounts/feeds. This platform can be used to manage other social media platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn.
Un-Follow. Refers to the act of taking someone off your following list.
So now that you have all these handy terms in your Twitter toolbox, are you ready to board the tweet train? Choo choo!