Twitter Lab

Activity One: Lurking on Twitter

Download Seesmic

The power of Twitter comes from the app you use for access. My favorite is "seesmic". We'll download their latest generation app > called "look". The nice thing about "look" is that you don't even need a Twitter account to use it. Download it now here:

Explore Trends

Once installed, it's time to explore. Let's look first at "trends". This is "what is hot" on twitter right now (or in the last day or in the > last week.) Click on "now" and you'll be presented with a list of topics.
Notice that some of them have a # in front of the words. Do you know what this is? It's called a "hashtag" and it is similar to a
"label" or a "tag" that we discussed during class. It's a way to put the tweet in a category for easy viewing by those interested in > the topic. We'll explore this further later in the lab.

Explore Interests

After looking at trends now, in the last day, and in the last week; click on "interests". Here you can look through lots of different
types of twitter-ers ranging from political to celebrities to charity.

Explore Channels

Now check out the "channels" where companies can promote themselves. Click on some of the featured brands and be ready to

Search Search Search

Finally, let's explore the all powerful search. Start with a search of "kogod". Then try "american university". Experiment with other > search terms and see what you find. Again, be ready to discuss your findings.

Activity Two: Sign Up

Now we're going to go directly to Twitter to sign up:
Once you've created your account, add your account name to the spreadsheet (on my computer at the front of the class)
Now write your first "tweet" using the Twitter web page. Anything you like (just keep it clean).
Start "following" me

In the update box on Twitter, type "Follow Melander"

Now start following everyone in the class

In the update box on Twitter, type "Follow {username}"
Repeat for every student in the class

Activity Three: A Few Twitter Concepts

Twitter is easy to use but it does have a few features that you need to learn. You can "tweet", you can "follow" people, you can "reply" to people, you can "re-tweet", and you can send direct & private messages. We've already done the first two. Let's look at the rest.

Now that you are following the other students, reply to one of their tweets.

Choose any tweet from any student (or me)
Click "reply" below the tweet
You'll see @{username} in the update box. This means you are replying to that username.
Write a reply (anything you like) to that user
Write a reply to another person by typing @{username} in the update box (instead of clicking on reply)

Send a direct message. This is a private message seen only by that person.

In the update box, type "d {username} message" (the "d" means direct message to {username})

Check your replies and direct messages

Click on "@username" (on the right side) to see if anyone replied to one of your tweets
Click on "direct messages" (on the right side) to see any direct messages sent to you


Interesting tweets can be "re-tweeted". When you "re-tweet" the original tweet shows up in your twitter stream so all of your followers see the tweet.
Click "retweet" and then "yes" to confirm that you want to show this tweet to your followers.

Activity Four: Back Channel and Hash Tag

One of the most useful features of Twitter is the ability for a large number of people to write about the same event from different perspectives. This allows you to "watch" a live event from anywhere. You may have seen this during the presidential debates, the inauguration, the playoff games this weekend, etc. You can follow a "back channel" in concert with the live event.

Back Channel

Let's start a back channel for this class. Start writing tweets about this class session. Think about the "audience" outside of the
lab that would be reading along and following the class. We'll use hashtag:


At the end (or beginning) of each tweet, use this hashtag. I'll display all the tweets that use this hashtag. Hopefully, you can
imagine what it would be like if people outside of this room used the same hashtag.

Activity Five: Companies and People

Mashable provides a list of Twitter lists to make it easy to find people to follow. Check them out here:

One of those lists is called "Brands". This list has all the companies that are using Twitter for marketing, support, and brand
management. Look at the list, their recent tweets, and be ready to discuss:

{Optional} Activity Six: Send tweets from your phone

Tweet by texting to 40404. Set up your phone here:

{Optional} Activity Seven: Add tweets to your blog or Facebook

You can send your tweets directly to your blog using a "widget":

From the same page, click on "Facebook" to see how you can use Twitter to update your Facebook status

{Optional} Activity Eight: Delete your account

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