I unfollowed quite a few profiles in Twitter today. I know a few profiles that consistently make tweets I consider interesting or entertaining but my tweet stream has been full of tweets I don’t care about lately. I took a closer look at some of the profiles I followed and found that most of their tweets didn’t get my attention. Those are the profiles I unfollowed.

Now I’m left following only 116 profiles and my tweet stream is much more interesting. Sometimes less actually is more. What really surprises me are the users that follow thousands of profiles. That means any individual profile that tweets content of interest to one of those users will almost never be seen in their tweet stream because their tweets will get drowned out by the thousands of other profiles tweeting. Overall, the tweet stream of a user who follows thousands of profiles could not possibly have much interest to the user.

To overcome this effect, some Twitter profiles tweet every few minutes. Many times, they simply tweet the same exact tweet over and over again. This does not help matters. The more prolific the tweets, the lower the quality of the tweets by that profile because they’re grasping at straws to continually come up with interesting content. And repetitive tweets might be more likely to be seen by followers but they’ll just dominate the tweet stream of all the followers who find it uninteresting, drowning out the tweets the follower would find interesting.

I recommend everyone cull the profiles they follow. The only reason to follow a profile is so it will show up in the tweet stream but there’s no point in viewing the tweet stream if it’s not interesting or entertaining. After unfollowing the profiles, their tweet stream will be much more interesting. And with fewer tweets in their followers’ stream, users can stop repeatedly tweeting the same tweet every few minutes just to try to be seen.

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