Use this handy A-Z educators guide for twitter as a discussion prompt with colleagues.
Use this handy A-Z educators guide for twitter as a discussion prompt with colleagues.

If you are new to twitter, or wanting to explain some of the most common terms to new members, we’ve compiled an A-Z to help ease understanding of what is going on…

  • DM – This is a private Direct Message sent to a twitter user. You need to follow that user before you can DM message them. DMs don’t appear in the public twitter stream. These messages are private between the two members, and usually what is said in a DM stays in a DM!
  • Follow – If tweets appear in your timeline then you probably are following them (unless someone has retweeted another tweet)
  • Follower – Someone who follows your tweets
  • Hashtag (#) – A hash symbol is used to comment about a specific topic, such as #ukedchat, in a tweet, so users searching twitter can easily find all tweets on that topic together.
  • HT (Heard Through) – This one is used to add credit to the source from which you originally gathered the idea for your tweet.
  • Link – Including a URL in your tweet. Caution should be used here since you only have 140 characters for each message. You can use shortened URL services, such as although twitter mainly shortens URLs automatically now.
  • MT – The act of modifying another user’s tweet. It is considered bad etiquette to do this, unless the modification is needed to make a correction, or to add relevant information to the original tweet.
  • Protected Account – A private account. You can only access tweets once permission has been granted.
  • Reply (@) – The @ symbol is used to reply to a twitter user. If you are replying to a tweet and want everyone to see your response, place a fullstop/period prior to the user name (for example .@ukedchat)
  • RT (ReTweet) – Reposting something that has already been posted on the Twitter stream. RT usually precedes the original post to give credit to the user who published it first.
  • Tweeps – Twitter friends, your most frequently contacted friends. Think about ‘Peeps’
  • Tweet – A post made on Twitter by a user. 140 characters is the maximum limit, which includes spaces!
  • Tweeter – An individual using Twitter
  • Twitterati – A-list Twitter users; the Twitter élite. These usually have a big number of followers, are somewhat famous and considered thought leaders (change agents) inside the Education Twittersphere.
  • Twittersphere – The collective group of people who tweet.
  • Unfollow – You can easily unfollow an account.
  • Via – This one is often used in place of RT, once again to give credit to the publisher. Think of this as citing your sources on Twitter. This is the only way of re-tweeting protected accounts, but it is usually common courtesy to ask permission to RT protected accounts.

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