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Zen Peacekeeper Guide to Twitter: Expanding the conversation

Monday, March 22, 2010 by Marianne Elliott

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Twitter-radish A couple of weeks ago I started a series of short posts sharing what I know about Twitter.

If you missed them, you can read the previous posts:

Twitter posts will pop up once a week and although I have some ideas
about the topics they’ll cover, please feel free to leave a comment
with any of your burning questions about Twitter.

Last week I shared my thoughts on joining the Twitter conversation, I’m continuing that theme this week but moving on to ‘retweeting’.

Expanding the conversation: Retweeting

If someone tweets something that you think is so good you’d like to share with your own followers, then you are going to want to retweet it.

There are a few ways to retweet so pull up a chair and listen closely.

The first option is using the “Retweet” function built into Twitter. So let’s say I look at my feed and see this lovely tweet from heatherplett (see below)

Picture 2
When I hover my cursor over her tweet the two options, ‘Reply’ and ‘Retweet’, appear. When I click on ‘Retweet’ a small dialogue box pops up checking that I really do want to retweet this to all my followers.

If I click on ‘Yes’ then Heather’s tweet will appear in my Twitter stream exactly as it is, like this:

Picture 3

There is another option. I may want to retweet what Heather has said but add my own comment. In that case I can copy her tweet and paste it into my update box, at the letters RT to the front of her tweet so everyone know I’m retweeting her and then add what I want to say.

It gets confusing when you explain it, so here’s another picture.

Picture 4

You can see Heather’s tweet in my Twitter stream. Then I’ve copied it and put her Twitter name at the front, preceeded by the letters RT so everyone knows I’m quoting her. Finally I added my 2 cents worth at the beginning.

Some people, when they use this approach, put the RT and the Twitter name at the end of the Tweet. I don’t think it matters where you put it as long as you give credit to the person you are quoting, and in that sense it’s kind of like a reference in an essay.

By including their twitter name you’ll also make sure that they see that you’ve retweeted them and that generally makes people feel loved so it’s got to be a good thing.

If you use a Twitter platform like Tweetdeck (which is what I use) then you may have other options for retweeting, but for simplicity’s sake I’m going to leave it at that for this week.

Let me know if you have any questions!

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7 Responses to "Zen Peacekeeper Guide to Twitter: Expanding the conversation"

  1. Every time I say “retweet” I think I sound like Elmer Fudd. 🙂

  2. a.q.s. says:

    I am trying to figure out if you follow someone, and they don’t follow you, but you retweet them either of the 2 options so mention, will they know you retweeted the or RT them?
    Or when you reply to someone you are following but they are not following you, do they get your message? i know probably the silliest questions but i feel your posting this has helped me a lot and other information seems overwhelming!
    Thanks so much.
    You are super!

  3. It made me smile to see my name and face appear in your Twitter stream. 🙂

  4. Barefoot Liz says:

    I still can’t get into twitter. I tend to forget to even post/read there.

  5. a.q.s. says:

    it’s okay barefoot liz…apparently I skipped a huge milestone by never joining facebook but being on twitter! 🙂 depending on ‘who’ you follow, it is a great source of information/news. like your personalized newstream!

  6. Jadyn says:

    Thanks for all the great info! I’m still new to Twitter and this was so helpful! I was wondering how it works when you want to respond to something somebody said, and RT it at the same time, but also include what they re-tweeted from somebody elso, so a double RT. I just attempted this when I wanted to respond to your tweet about the Afghan elder who was shot to death for failing to come out of his house, when it turned out he was deaf (this saddened me immensely). I am not sure that I went about responding the right way, so I thought I’d ask if you could explain how this works. 🙂 Thanks so much!

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