There is much controversy, even today, about whether it’s possible to have real friends who come solely from Internet platforms. Indeed, there are still some naysayers who do or don’t use social media who don’t believe any real friends can come from it. I have to wholeheartedly disagree. Finding friends on Twitter is much the same as in real life. You will find the ones who pretend to be your friend in order to get something from you. Then there will be those friends who are only your friends when you are logged into Twitter.
Then there are those few people who are still your friend, even when you log off of Twitter. You can call them at any hour of the day, and they will respond with friendship and genuine caring. Those people are your real friends, and yes, they can be found on Twitter. Now how do you spot these precious and rare people?
1. Take the time to build the friendship online before you open up to them offline- This is an important part of any friendship. When you move too fast, people often back away. They don’t know you and don’t want to share quickly, for fear of being hurt. If you take the time to get to know the person online first, and then start talking offline, you might find yourself a friend for life.
2. If you have to do most of the work and he or she never reciprocates, you know this is just a Twitter friend- Everyone knows that in a friendship, one person will do more than the other to sustain that friendship. However, if you are always calling, texting, and trying to see the person, and if you are getting no response or a lack of interest in return, that person is NOT your friend. They might enjoy you on Twitter, but they just don’t want to take the time to build the friendship offline. That is okay. It is that person’s loss, not yours.
3. Be yourself, above all else– People online as well as offline want to build friendships with people who are honest and open about who they are. If you aren’t honest from the beginning, you can never hope to build long lasting friendships. This goes for offline friendships as well. Open up parts of yourself so others can get to know who you are.
I have learned these lessons many times offline, as well as on Twitter. It hurts when you think someone is your friend, and they end up just being a Twitter friend. However, I have also met countless individuals who I can count on always. I am thankful to Twitter for bringing these people into my life, and am hopeful that I will meet many more of you in the future.