Everything’s new to someone: Twitter’s been around for nearly 13 years, but people are starting up accounts all the time. Sometimes they know what they want and start following celebrities or news pundits. Sometimes they join because they have the sense they’ve been missing out on something, but they’re not sure how to get engaged or what Twitter can even do for them. Sometimes they migrate over because the social media platform was bought out by conservative groups who implemented censorship on nudity (but not, say, hate speech), and after gutting the soul of the platform are now looking to unload it.

Side note: PornHub buying Tumblr isn’t good news. PornHub’s Fabian Thylmann has become ungodly wealthy by facilitating video piracy, bankrupting independent video producers, discouraging new content from being made, and denying any involvement with this process. Supporting him—and he already has a dozen sports cars and an Olympic pool that fills on demand—directly equates to punishing the people who produce the material you want. Listen to Jon Ronson’s The Butterfly Effect to learn more about the lives Fabian and PornHub have ruined.

If you’re really determined to meet Twitter halfway and learn what it can do for you, linguist Gretchen McCulloch has written an excellent, thoughtful crash course on getting started. This was written three years ago so some of the settings may have changed, but largely the techniques for involvement and posting still stand.

Beyond that? If you’re reading this blog, you’re probably on Twitter looking for size-fantasy content: the congress of giants and tiny people (robots, Furries, monsters, &c.), and you’ve probably found the rough, amorphous communities there. Some call themselves #SizeTwitter; others eschew names and definition but are still cliques ensconced within an impenetrable carapace you will bump up against. Mostly it’s various overlapping circles of artists, writers, fans of these, and shitposters who are into this stuff but don’t want to appear to be too into this stuff because that would be cringey, even though we’re all super fucking into this stuff.

Some creators let everyone know what they’re about, right out of the gate. Artists and writers post links to their work or post them directly within Twitter. Lurkers hang out, follow interesting content, maybe start responding to conversations… and sooner or later, they want in. They want to get known, they want to be part of a group or the community at large.

But how do you break in to a group of people that already know each other? How do you establish yourself and get that ball rolling? Several people have wondered about this and asked for advice. I made a poll out of these concerns and solicited users’ impressions. Sixteen people answered: two described themselves as recent arrivals, and eight had been around one year or less.

As for level of engagement or what they’re doing here, most people said they hung out to look for interesting content and interacted when they felt moved to do so. Few people at either extreme of interaction.

People checked off on various kinds of activity, why they’re here, what they do, what they’re looking for. There were ten votes for “I’m a creator,” twelve for posting interesting links and RTing content, seven for shitposting, and five for RPing. Four people admitted to lurking and not wanting any attention. Lurking’s fine, there’s no requisite to be interactive and chatty, but lurking does tend to earn its own reputation, so that’s something to bear in mind. If you’re cool with that, keep on keepin’ on.

Next: the questions. Not everyone agreed with each other on all points but everyone had something to say. These answers reveal people’s experiences, both in real life and their interactions online. Some people are naturally gregarious and outgoing, others have been burned by unusual (or all-too-typical) circumstances.

Most of the answers come down to liking what you like, believing in yourself, and showing respect for others.

Q1: What’s your advice for someone who wants to start talking to people and interacting? How hard is this to do, initially?

Comment! Like! Retweet things that strike your fancy. The Twitter guide on the #sizetwitter mission statement pages is a good resource.

First of all, listen to and read what others say. Pay attention to their tastes and needs. Start slow, a bit timid, to get to know each other, to build that trust. For those as socially awkward as me, it is very hard to build such trust, so it’ll take time. And in many ways, others will stop trusting you, or will unfollow you for whatever reason… and it’s OK. There’s a lot to do and the fact they stop following you shouldn’t be an indication of them despising you, maybe you aren’t that interesting for a continued relationship and you still can exchange some tweets once and then.

I would say it’s very hard for me personally. Best thing to do is just rip it off like a bandaid and just talk. It’ll flow from there most times.

Have something to say, and be willing to defend it.

It’s damn hard! And my advice is to start small and baby step your way up to feeling more comfortable! I don’t know anyone on here who would bite your head off for talking to them, just always remember that it’s another person you’re talking too!

I can’t conceive of this being difficult, so maybe I don’t have any good advice. When I see a convo that interests me I join in. I don’t ask for permission or apologize; I just say what I want to say and leave. It was never hard for me to interact. I just don’t like to say much.

Just do it. The more you put off, the harder it will be.

Just find people you vibe with and watch out for the odd asshole.

Just politely add feedback to some images you like. How hard this is depends on a lot of things, but gender seems to have an influence on it.

Just say hi! People are pretty friendly around here, if you aren’t weird.

So many people treat it like some big daring process, but the easiest way ta join in is ta just start responding ta folks ya like hearing from. Bonus points if I recognise ya from my Likes notifications~

Treat people with the same rules of decorum as you would in social situations, and do not assume you are entitled to anyone’s time, attention, or efforts. Don’t be hard on yourself if you have trouble, know that things take time. Respect others and respect yourself.

Q2: What are some good ways of making yourself known, sharing what you’re about and what you’re into?

Actually talking to people.

Again, good conversations get shared by people who enjoy conversing. You’ll find yer niche in the community so long as ya keep spiderwebbing out~

Be constant. If you are like those with creative blocks and can’t produce anything, you will be easily forgotten. You need to show what you like, what you can do… without being a spammer, that’s it. Like building trust, this also takes long. People have to see what you can do, your stuff be recognizable enough, and when you share your interests always be sure to respect others. Also, there’s this thing that some people won’t like it when you go political, but it’s OK: this is your safe place, share what you like. You might watch it once and then, yet never censor yourself.

Do the opposite of what I do. Hah! I honestly don’t know. My profile is set to private so I’m not out to make myself known. If I wanted more followers I’d start posting pictures of my body parts with ideas on how they relate to small people, but that’s never been an interest of mine. I share what I share and if five people like it, I’m fine.

Just be consistent, be decent to each other.

Just post it, make connections.

Make content that reflects that.

Memes. If you have NOTHING else to offer, meme answers are a pretty good way to show what you’re about in a semi-likable manner. What’s your porn name if you’re born in January? Do you like cats or dogs? Do you believe Thanos enjoys Ant-Man? These are important grounds on which to stand if you want others to perceive your existence.

Not a clue!

Put it in your bio, be open about your passions and niche interests. They will resonate with someone.

Sharing/retweeting things that you enjoy or that you feel express your interests, and sharing your own content if you produce it. Share aspects of your daily life if you’re comfortable doing so. Ask questions, ask for help if you need it, and answer and give help in return as you can.

Via your tweets, comments, also can make a pinned tweet or chain of tweets that tells what you’re about. Copy and re-post/pin it every few months if you you want to update it or just “bump” it.

Q3: What are some things to watch out for, and how do you deal with them?

Again, I’m not the right person to ask. I ignore all warning signs when I like someone… but watch out for people feeding you lines in DM, or asking for pics and offering none. EXPECT RECIPROCITY. Stand firm about your own rules for proximity. Examine a person’s TL for content, and follow your gut. I follow very little people so that’s how I deal with them. I just don’t follow them, or I mute them if it’s someone I kinda like but sometimes posts too many damn vaginas.

Bigotry, mainly. This community should be built around respect. We’ve got a lot of people here, very diverse people. They need their space as well, so if you’re one of those who thinks human rights are a joke, who use racial and sexist and LGBT-phobic slurs and similar… to sum up, if you’re a bigot you won’t get my sympathy.

Don’t take it personally if someone doesn’t respond, depending on how many accounts someone follows, there can be a lot of timeline content flowing and it can be difficult to impossible to respond to more than a few.

Following someone generally disliked. Befriending and liking them. Be willing to stand by your decision and be clear about why you made it and the repercussions of your decision, and be able to change your mind and see the error of your ways.

I often just drop anything that becomes an issue, if yer talkin about drama or the weirdly obsessive types. If things ain’t working out with an individual or a group, ya need ta be okay droppin them, at least til things resolve. Not worth your own mental health.

It’s just hard sometimes to join in conversations as you can feel unwelcome since nobody knows you. The only way to get to know people is to get over that and talk.

Just don’t be pushy or ignore stated boundaries.

Never forget that everyone on here is a person. It might be easy to just see them as sexual or as shitty or whatever, but don’t forget that everyone is a person!

People who only see size as a fetish. They usually don’t care if you’re ace and will go out of their way to be an asshole to you in my experience.

Some people are very annoying. Some people are using the idea of being “dom” as an excuse to be a really rude person. Avoid interacting with either of these camps, but the latter will likely get you shunned if you speak out (due to mindless followers).

Tempers can run high; pick your battles. Don’t waste time on people who are disrespectful. Some people are very demanding, assuming they are entitled to others’ content or attention. If someone makes you uncomfortable and shows no sign of stopping, there is no shame in blocking them.

There’s a lot of pettiness and childish drama. But they usually block anyway.

Q4: What’s the hardest thing to take a chance on, in putting yourself out there in Size Twitter?

Being an active participant of it.

Fear of rejection!

I think I would just say it’s the worry that you won’t be accepted. So long as you’re polite, most people are accommodating.

It all comes down to being yourself or whoever you want to be. It can suck to feel rejected for that.

Knowing that people may not like what you make is my biggest struggle since I don’t draw female giants or porn.

Not getting the feeling that I contribute nothing to the community and I’m easy to forget. And being the only one to blame.

Posting your own work.

Sharing creative content and simply sharing your personality in such a highly specific niche community.

Sharing things you make, not knowing what reception they’ll get.

Showing my true self and facing rejection. But don’t be afraid of it happening, because you do begin to get a thick skin. You need that.

Talking to girls.

Tweet walk of shame. You’re gonna post some deuces sometimes. Don’t apologize for them. Post with conviction and move on.

Your first couple messages to anyone are your first impression to them. That’s how they determine if it’s worth continuing the interaction. The hardest part is not letting that pressure get ta you. Just be yourself, say more than “Hi👋” an you’ll click with the right people~

Q5: What’s something you should absolutely not do when meeting other people and mingling in groups?

Act in an entitled way, behave in an immature manner, and assume things in bad faith.

Be insistently horny at them.

Come in and throw judgement at people.

Disrespecting others for what they like and how they show it. Everyone has their tastes, their fantasies, their kinks, their fetishes. Everyone can express those in many ways: drawings, collages, stories, role playing… There are many ways to enjoy this that one should look at them with interest and respect.

Do not be disrespectful, overbearing, judgmental about kinks, entitled. Respect Boundaries!

Don’t repeat yourself if you feel like you are being ignored. Just find the right moment to add appropriate content to the topic. But it depends…

Don’t be pushy or obnoxious about it. Let other people get to know you but don’t be a dick.

Expect to be noticed without putting yerself out there. Expect someone else to be able to cater explicitly to your needs. Expect everyone to be interested. Just…. generally tamper your expectations. We’ll come ta know ya over time, and you’ll find your place. That’s not something you can force.

Honestly? Escalate. If folks are talking about SFW stuff then keep it there, but unless you’re in a group for a bit and can read the room very well never try to make something sexual unless it started that way or you know the folks you’re talking with.

In my experience? Having strong opinions has fucked me over. :/ Don’t tell people how you feel lol

Share ANY personal info. Share NOTHING.

Talk about your skin conditions, discuss your RP conquests, declare one poster is better than others, RT nonsensically the content of racist, hateful, bullying, politically wrong people.

Tell them you are a proud member of SizeTwitter.

Speculative fiction author within size fantasy, artist, musician.

One Comment on “Breaking Into Twitter

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