The Twitter Controversy Over Thanking For RTs

I’ve always been genuinely appreciative of all my followers, especially when they give me the gift of a retweet. Up until a few days ago, if you follow me, you’ve seen me send out at least a dozen tweets every day thanking people for those RTs.

However, I’m at a crossroads now about whether or not to continue doing that. I haven’t decided what to do, and I’m hoping you can give me your insight and advice.

When I first started on Twitter, I thought it was so rude when someone didn’t send a thank you for an RT. I remember once I even sent a tweet that said, “I’ll never be so big for my britches that I can’t thank someone for an RT.” Twitter was so simple back then, it just seemed like the right thing to do.

But now, six months later, the complexion of my Twitter stream is very different. Things move so fast. Sometimes I can’t even keep up with it myself. More than ever, I love my followers and Twitter friends dearly, and I am so appreciative of the ones that not only follow me but also visit this blog. You have become my best friends and I don’t know what I would do without you, really.

I am being RT’ed more and more lately and I’m concerned that I will clutter up everyone’s stream with endless lists of names if I continue to thank every person for their kindness. I have 22,000 followers, so I looked to people with more followers than me to see what they do, thinking that would give me some guidance. Some of them thank people in DM, a very small number of them thank people on the public timeline, and most just don’t do it at all.

I’ve heard newbies on Twitter criticize these people for not being grateful for their RTs, but now I see the other side of the coin, they aren’t being rude (…most of the time. Haha!), they are trying to keep their stream filled with quality tweets, instead of lists of names, which is the reason you followed them in the first place, right?

How do you feel about this? Do you think it is ok for people to thank you in their hearts instead of in the Twitter stream? I still haven’t decided what I am going to do; I’m still sorting it all out in my mind. You may find yourself having to make this same decision one day. What will you do?

UPDATE added 12/31/09: I had no idea when I wrote this post that it would strike such a nerve with our readers. I want everyone to know that I’ve read every single comment and wow have I learned a lot. Thank you for sharing yourselves and your opinions so freely with us all. That is the best part of our Twitter community, the willingness to share our ideas and at the same time, respect those that may have a different opinion. Bottom line, you all rock. Just know that you are appreciated and you have your finger on the pulse of social media. xxoo

If you are new to Twitter, here is a cute little video made by @adriandayton explaining what a retweet is. Enjoy!