I am about to unfollow many people. Particularly the ones that asked me to follow them so they could send me a direct message. A newly released Twitter feature now allows you receive private messages from people you don’t follow, so long as they are following you. All you need to do is check a box in your Twitter settings to enable it.

As far as I know, Jim Connolly, the author of the above tweet, found this first. It looks like the feature hasn’t rolled out to all users though. I couldn’t find it in my settings. The only way I could verify that it indeed works was to follow Jim Connolly himself and send him a direct message. It worked.

twitter follow

 

Asides being a nuisance to your favourite celebs and Twitter crushes, at least the ones who are brave (or stupid) enough to enable it, a number of interesting uses crop up. Journalists, online customer relationship managers and generally people who thrive on information would find it useful. Journos on Twitter typically put their email addresses in their bios for this very reason. If they could get DMs from anyone, they would not need to expose their emails and can decide to follow up on only leads/tips that are of particular interest to them.

In particular, when this rolls out to everyone, there will be no longer any need to fall for the “please follow back so I can DM you” scam

PS: I don’t care about how many people I’m following, and hardly unfollow people because I stopped reading my timeline a long time ago. Created an ultra curated list for my sanity ages ago.

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