The Twitter experience is a good one (actually, it’s awesome!)…and being unfollowed should never negate that. Here are some reasons why I think you shouldn’t  care when someone strikes that pesky little “unfollow” key.

Firstly, this post was inspired by a comment I started to make on a blog where the writer outlines the futility of fretting over followers (sorry, alliteration…I DID warn you of this tendency in my “About” page).   I had also been contemplating certain aspects of the unfollow scenario and was getting too long-winded (what else is new?) and I forwent (is that a word?!) the soap-box rant.  So, here are my thoughts on why people might unfollow, and why you might wish to focus your anxieties on more important things, like who IS @joeygiggles and what is this #JGF thingy? ;)

I find that when people unfollow me they tend to fit into one of two main categories:

1) Teens who tweet incessantly about @JustinBieber and I’m pretty sure get completely disillusioned and devastated when they realize, to their horror, that I don’t share this particular obsession…and,

2) People who are following fewer than 100 people. I cringe-I really do!-when newbie Tweeps follow me and they innocently and naively believe I might add a lil something to their stream, and I see it coming from the moment I follow them back. I sigh wistfully at the connections we might have made were they not about to be overwhelmed by my effusive and prolific tweets.  Then – EGADS! They discover I am a uber floody Twitterer type person and they…well…they just can’t hack having one person monopolize their stream. No hard feelings when they unfollow me. In fact, I think maybe we’ll meet again when the bulk of my blather gets diluted by other blathering Twitter-maniacs! :)

3) [Update as of 12/3/2010 – there is a third reason I have found for the unfollow: Stoopid Strategy.  It’s an official Twitter term; look it up ;) More and more I find there is a breed of Twitter user who follows en masse and then after you’ve given the courtesy of a follow back, they promptly UNfollow you.  One would scratch their heads and wonder why would people do this? Well, back in the early days – when I wrote this post – I was naive and thought everyone’s purpose to be on Twitter and other social media venues was up front.  I’m finding that there is a slew of people wanting to artificially look really cool and popular by having a suuper skewed ratio of follows/followers.  Meaning, they only follow 147 people but have 3,784 followers. Don’t get me wrong! Some people really are uber cool and popular and are followed by considerably more people than they themselves follow. (I am not one of these – heehee) But I find these tactics tedious and pathetic and disingenuous.  I am not a “blocker” by practice, but when I see these people do this to me several times, my “benefit-of-the-doubting” gets taxed and I am tempted.  For now, I just sigh and wish them the best in their strategizing.  I feel badly for them that their time investment on Twitter is spent so unwisely.  There are so very many better ways to enjoy the possibilities! Have you experienced this? Any suggestions on handling it better than I’ve chosen to? OK, rant over. Back to our regularly scheduled programming.]

Bots have feelings, too.

Personally, I have trouble hitting the unfollow button even for bots! What did a bot ever do to me? I think…well…gee…what if one day I’m feeling a little flabby, or my smile is a little duller, or I need to find out all of Donald Trumps’ secrets…what then? Who will I turn to?

A few more thoughts on unfollowing:  Sometimes its accidental, as many Tweeps utilize software that can be merciless in its culling.  Sometimes its strategy,  and people are trying to streamline their ratio of following to followers.  I don’t agree with these Twitter imposed limitations of follow vs follower, by the way.  There are many people whose Twitterings I’d like to include in my stream yet who I know won’t follow back (celebrities, gurus, iguanas ) and it makes me feel silly mulling over the statistical ramifications of selecting: “follow”.

Anyways, whatever the reasons people either don’t follow back or unfollow, it’s rarely personal, but when it is, it just may be because you just don’t jive with their groove. (I’m trying to sound young and hip  here– oh damn, using that word just ensured I’m NOT! ugh)  :) Worry not.  If someone doesn’t relate to you, chances are, you’d cock your head sideways at their musings. It’s really best you part ways in these instances anyways. There are, what, at last count over 100 million people on Twitter?  With over 300,000 new users joining daily. Don’t you think maybe you can drum up a replacement person who giggles at your antics or pauses in deep thought at your 140-character prose? I do! Try me – haha. No really, put no more energy into who unfollows you.  Focus on those who follow you loyally, are mesmerized by your stream…who eagerly await your next tweet.  And enjoy the embrace.

If you liked this post, read more about the following/follower conundrum on my guest post here: Twitter Trifles: A Follower Conundrum

And also Twitter: Be Gentle with the Giants

What do you think of this post?
Awesome (18) Interesting (5) Useful (8) Meh (0)

{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

Irina April 18, 2010 at 10:47 am

I am SO loving this blog! :D While I am not a savvy Twitter-er (?) a lot of this makes sense (and in such a fun way) – I will check back often as your posts refresh my spirit and humor!


Gina "SuuperG" Stark April 18, 2010 at 3:48 pm

Yay! Thanks :) You betta check back ;) Thanks so much for popping in!


URKidnRite April 18, 2010 at 12:36 pm

Right on! I started using Qwitter and actualy enjoy watching the folks I think are bots and don’t follow at first–unfollow me after a few days. I’ve had one unfollow in the last couple weeks I was initially sad about, but some of the humor or tweeters I like didn’t suit her. Not sure what other reasons she may have had, but I tried not to be sad for long. :) I didn’t stop following her because I still enjoy her tweets and will still @reply to her and engage. No hard feelings. There’s no way I can read everything in my stream, even though I want to, but I set up searches to follow the people who consistently entertain me with content and fun (yes, you’re on one of my searches). I love your blog, your tweets, and have enjoyed following you. I hope I never do anything that leads you to unfollow me, but if so, I’ll do my best not to feel crushed. I might however ask you if you meant to if I can’t see a “reason” for it, but just tell me, no problem. :)

Loving your blog. I do a couple blogs that I don’t link to from this account but I need to do more!! You’re inspiring that way.


Gina "SuuperG" Stark April 18, 2010 at 3:52 pm

Now why on earth would I ever unfollow you?! :) You bring mega doses of cheer into my Twitter stream – you’re a keeper! ;) Thanks so muuchly for your very generous comments..I’m glad I can bring a smile every once in a while. And by the way, I tend to be a communicator, if you hadn’t noticed yet! lol It’s a bit of a pet peeve of mine when people drop off with no explanation..I think we should always allow friends the opportunity to explain, clarify or apologize…so this is how I operate. I’m so glad you stopped by and that I can inspire a wee bit! Cheers!


URKidnRite April 19, 2010 at 11:25 am

Is it cute when men blush? lol. I’d sorta noticed the communicator thing. I feel weird sending someone an explanation for why I’m unfollowing them. What if they don’t care? Now I just look like an egotist telling them how to do things. On the other hand, if I’m not following them, they can’t dm me to ask why, so I’d be sort of making them publicly ping me if they want to know, so that would suck. What a Quandary. :)

Anyway, you don’t inspire just a wee. I’m thinking about starting a list of the awesome things people have said to me that I can read when I’m feeling down. Your comment about cheer & being a keeper and many of your tweets will end up in that list.

Definitely let me know if you ever discover I’ve unfollowed. It’ll be a glitch, I guarantee it.
Oh, and by the way: #BellyDanceBlackmail #CharityVideo


Gina "SuuperG" Stark April 20, 2010 at 11:57 am

URKidnRite, you bring up very good points…It’s delicate…you care that someone you used to engage with has dropped off and it’s their prerogative, but what if it was accidental? They very likely would want to remedy that. I can think of ONE time I gently prodded someone on the public stream for an unfollow cause I was pretty certain we got on fine and just LOL’d lightly…sure enough, he came right back and refollowed, as it was purely unintentional. Who knows..maybe we could initiate a subtle code for #HEYWHYTHEHECKDIDYOUUNFOLLOWMEBUDDYWERENTWEFRIENDS? lol something more like #yoohoo :) Thanks for all of your comments and support! Cheers to you and your menagerie of animals! :)


Jonathan Mast April 19, 2010 at 6:45 pm

Well said and timely. Thank you!


Gina "SuuperG" Stark April 20, 2010 at 11:52 am

You’re very welcome! Thanks for reading and commenting. Cheers!


URKidnRite April 20, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Ok, your note about bot followers inspired me too. I followed one who looked like they may not be a bot today, they dm’d me a link and I sent them back this message:

I usually block people that send me links before any introductions. Any reason why I shouldn’t?

If I haven’t heard back from them in a day, I’ll be blocking them, but thanks for making me a slightly nicer person. :P


Gina "SuuperG" Stark April 21, 2010 at 1:14 pm

URKidnRite, lol anytime! Glad I could help ;-) Thanks for your input. I think it’s a topic that could be mulled over in many ways. Cheers!


Freya April 20, 2010 at 11:01 pm

Hey Gina

I so agree… There are people that I have unfollowed over time on twitter but it is never personal. Its just like you said “they just don’t jive with my groove”.

That said if someone unfollowed me, depending on circumstances and situation I might –
1. Ask them why
2. Try and make a connect if thats missing
3. Just ignore

My two cents… :)



Gina "SuuperG" Stark April 21, 2010 at 1:16 pm

Hi Freya,
Thank you for your comments! I love your 2 cents…feel free to return and add another 3…we’ll make it a nickle! ;-) Cheers!


Matt Owens April 26, 2010 at 3:03 am

It doesn’t matter who unfollows you except in political accounts. What I find interesting is the way political tweeters, who are otherwise backing the same political party, will unfollow those in their party whom they disagree with but not offer opposing viewpoints to counteract what caused them to unfollow, try to find common ground nor show any concern that the topic might become an issue in the primaries. If the unfollower is a politician, it sets them up for a lobbyist to categorize them as being negative on a given issue, etc. The offended tweeter (the one that was unfollowed) can then follow all the followers of the unfollower to make up for the diss. In the end, someone who follows thousands should not quietly unfollow any specific account simply because one disagrees…unless one wants to say “I am your political enemy but I don’t want others to know where I stand on the issue, categorize me and note that I don’t want to let my followers see that we disagree”.


Gina "SuuperG" Stark April 26, 2010 at 10:49 pm

Hey Matt, thanks so much for your comments and a new aspect of the unfollowing syndrome ;) I think it’s hard to really guess why someone unfollows. Of course it’s kinda fun to surmise…and you bring up some really interesting points and political motives. I still find I get unfollowed by people with under 100 followees – sighhhh….lol ;-) Cheers and thanks again. G


modelsupplies June 23, 2010 at 9:46 pm

LOVE this post~!!! I am often paraded through the streets of Twitter as an "UNFOLLOWER" by a Justin Bieber fan who must have unfollowed me, cuz that's when I unfollow people-unless they're stars ;-) I find this parade ridiculous, but it makes me laugh out loud even now, since the leader of the band is almost ALWAYS someone who has just unfollowed all of their followers and expects me to remain – loyally~!! Not happening for the Bieber fan, maybe for the Bieber – lol
Anita @ModelSupplies


gitanablog June 24, 2010 at 9:19 am

lol Anita! I love how you describe your public shaming for unfollowing! Too funny! Thanks for visiting again and for your hilarious comment – you know how I love to see your smiling cheer-bringing presence! I just finished a guest post on another aspect of a silly follower dilemma…… This one is even MORE tongue-in-cheeky :) I was just "outed" shouted for an unfollow…funny thing, she wasn't following me at the time of my unfollow…so, hmmm….I'm supposed to follow loyally without reciprocation? She has 50,000 followers, so I imagine it reached a lot of eyes, but if someone unfollows me due to a mean-spirited shout out?…I say they're not enjoying the same Twitter experience I am, and I wish them the best! Thanks again for your awesomeness. Cheers! xoxoxoxo Gina


disthename July 8, 2010 at 2:10 pm

Good blog! (angel huggs)


gitanablog July 8, 2010 at 11:30 pm

Thanks so much! :) Did u read about the hiking oops? lol I need your Snoopy band-aids! ;-) Cheers, Gina


Dawn September 2, 2010 at 7:59 pm

It's hard not take unfollows personally but I try not to fret about it. What puzzles me is folk who follow and then as soon as you follow them they unfollow you. Okay, maybe I said something that got up their nose, but I don't think so. I got the feeling they were trying to alter their follow/follower ratio and saw me as expendable!

Love your always cheerful comments and helpful advise


Gina SuuperG Stark September 3, 2010 at 9:15 am

Greetings Dawn :) Thank you for visiting and for your comment. I recently noticed what you describe on epidemic proportions…people following you and immediately after you follow them – whooop – they unfollow you. Maybe sometimes it's a glitch in some software they're using, but – ugh! lol – it is such a ridiculous waste-of-time game they play. You're in New Zealand, yes? I'll follow you there! :) I had a blissful albeit waaayyy too short 3-week visit to the north and south islands a couple years back, with my mom. (Some posts on here). I still keep NZ high on my travel wish list. I only got a teaser and it whet my appetite for more of natural grand beauty, amazingly delicious and varied cuisine (pies!!) and genuinely warm and kind people. I'll look you up when I am blessed with the good fortune to return! Cheers and hugs, G


goldeneagle September 2, 2010 at 8:22 pm

I was a newbie(150 follows)when I met you and "figured u could add something to my stream" and now I'm on 400 follows. So you aint gettin ME in ur a box! Sure u have aded a lot to my stream but I'm still here & I'll tweet ya under the table any day : ) Well, not _today cuz I'm having both PC & Twitter issues….

On a less agitated note; Clark Kent used to follow me(u know SuperM- ssshhh)it was reassuring yet creepy at the same time(I'll tell you why). I could say "my followers(even though I had 50) could beat up ANYbody else's followers". But by the same token, he DID have x-ray vision. You can tell when he uses it when he raises his glasses a bit. He has fine eyesight, the glasses just miraculously conceal his true identity. So having him follow me was like regularly going through one of those pathetic airport security toys. So I can't say I'd like him following me again(besides I have Gumby(dammit) and Chuck Norris : ) and I'm sure the reason he left was to save dams from rupturing and pounding meteors in near-Earth space. But he MUST have some type of texting smart phone, right? Sheesh! A single peep isn't too much to ask.

Short story long…I'll follow u anywhere G.


Gina SuuperG Stark September 5, 2010 at 10:34 am

Awwww thank you for the cute Suuper Follower story and the video/song :) I'm glad Clark Kent is focusing his efforts on meteors :D Thank you for following me on Twitter and for bringing mirth here as well! Cheers! G


goldeneagle September 2, 2010 at 8:29 pm

BTW, that's "follow" in the non creepy way. Speaking of creepy, that microscopic smiley face(down there–>) is staring at me!


Jim November 9, 2010 at 3:26 pm

Hi Gina!

I wanted to follow-up on our twitter conversation earlier via here, so that I could better explain what my question was. It is sometimes difficult to explain something in a 140 character limit <smile>. Although this makes my perhaps dumb question public, I'm sure there are others who may have wondered about the same thing?

A recent retweet by you: (you entire post copied BELOW)

************************* retweet ***************************
SuuperG Gina Stark
Bravo for your creatabulousness! RT @jimgalon @SuuperG abso-toodle-utely you make up words *smile* one could say you've become hipular
********************* end of retweet ***********************

The beginning of this retweet has your tweeter name followed by your actual name in this case (as the header).
Then the BODY of the tweet, in this case your retweet of my tweet.

My question is: In the BODY of the your retweet, you included your twitter name after my twitter name.

Does the inclusion of your tweeter name in the body of the tweet ADD mentions to your tweeter score? (i.e. Klout or something similar?) Or perhaps there is another reason for doing this? I have seen several people doing this, at least I have noticed it now.

I was just wondering if there is a reason for this or just something you do occasionally.




Gina SuuperG Stark November 9, 2010 at 11:56 pm

Hi Jim,

No problem. I understood the question and my answer will pretty much cover the same points. I am simply retweeting your tweet *exactly* as you tweeted it; meaning, it would actually take MORE time to remove my name from the original portion of the tweet. All tweeters are different, but I often hit RT and just add my reply in front of the RT letters. Had I removed the original "@SuuperG" from YOUR portion of the retweet, it may have seemed odd that I was answering you out of the blue. This way, it makes more sense that I was replying to a tweet that was addressed to me. Other times, I just reply and leave out the entire tweet of what I'm replying to. Often (because I may take hours to reply to someone) the person I am replying to has forgotten WTH I am even replying to! :) So, this is why I include it. To be clear, I never typed my own name in the tweet example you've shown. The original was in your tweet when you addressed me. The second (meaning the first word in the tweet) merely indicates it's a tweet posted by me. I hope this clarifies some of your questions.

You asked me if including my name in your original mention increases my Klout score? Let's put it out there for people to answer because, frankly, I don't know. I don't care much! lol I'm not much of a "strategic" tweeter. I just join the fray and focus on engaging, etc. I DO know of one "strategic" trick I've seen some people use…they include the letters 'RT' in their own original tweets to fool the counters into thinking they are being retweeted. I am fairly certain this is a move to skew numbers and increase scores. My response? Whateva! :) If people are that concerned about it, have at it. I don't use grading systems to determine whose content I find valuable or who I like to send grandiose hugs to. But I'm happy to use my blog to see if we can drum up some answers for you. Thanks for connecting and I'm glad you feel comfy to ask about things. Enjoy your Twitter experience! Cheers, G


@photoasia December 3, 2010 at 4:59 pm

Good post and advice! Used to be obsessed with services like Qwitter and what not in the early days as a newbie. At least until I realized it's better to use that energy on the people who actually still follow you.

Fortunately, I don't get any @JustinBieber followers, so I tend unfollow Twitter users for a different reason. I'm a bit conservative who I choose to follow, mainly because I like to follow people that add something meaningful to my stream, say great content, sharing interesting links, conversations etc. I believe about 20% of the people I follow, don't follow me back. It doesn't bother me, provided they fulfill the critera of being meaningful to me in some way.

There's always going to be people that play games or use "stoopid strategies" who are only interested in gaining more followers for whatever reason. Wouldn't it be so much more productive to just focus on creating a network of people that care about what you tweet and engage with you instead?



Gina SuuperG Stark December 3, 2010 at 5:22 pm

Hiya Chris and thank you muuchly! I like that…being meaningful. I think a main reason I've chosen (thus far) to reciprocate in a follow back is to allow the possibilities to unfold, and to allow the other person the ability to DM me if need be. If someone shows that they're a hate-monger or they abuse the DM privilege with spam, it's very easy to unfollow. And while we're at it…lol… how about the brand new follower who sends this DM "Thanks for following. I am following you back. But if you unfollow me, I will unfollow you." *shaking my head* That is the #1 way to get me to end the relationship then and there! :} Have a great one and thanks for your lovely photos! Cheers, Gina


@photoasia December 4, 2010 at 3:24 am

Really admire you and other people able to keep track of thousands of followers – I have a hard time with a meager 240 I follow. Thank God for Twitter lists is all I can say!

That's so true! Almost want to unfollow when I get a generic auto-DM from a person I decide to follow. So annoying! LOL that might be another reason why I don't always reciprocate a follow – just don't want to break the illusion ;)

Have a wonderful weekend!



Gina SuuperG Stark December 10, 2010 at 11:47 pm

Hi again! Phew…I don't know if I actually DO keep track! But I think I deserve an "A" for effort ;) Thank you for your input and perspective! Have a great weekend and a lovely holiday! Cheers, G


Joe Shiller December 3, 2010 at 9:17 pm

Gina, Great Post. I love the way you write. The people using update #3 (skewed ratio to look cool) will have it backfire on them. My self for one, I weed out anybody who does not follow me back and so do a lot of other people. There is a lot of unfollow software and services out there that does this for people.


Gina SuuperG Stark December 10, 2010 at 11:46 pm

Hey Joe! Sorry for the delay in replying – crazy Christmas schedule! I'm loving it! Thank you for your comment and your compliment – golly! :) I do check for unfollows too, and interestingly, just in the last few days…I noticed 3 people who unfollowed me that I was a bit hurt *sniff sniff* and so I flat out asked them on the stream if it was purposeful or if were still "cool" and in all cases they were grateful that I mentioned it and they all re-followed :) I think, frankly, they were surprised that I reached out to each of them when I have "so many" followers that I knew we interacted and engaged, you know? Anyway, I tweet such a fierce stream now, always trying to share favorite things, reciprocate RTs, send out hugs and thanks…well…I don't blame anyone for unfollowing if I monopolize their stream! Have a great holiday! Cheers & hugs, G


@LondonWebDev April 6, 2011 at 12:46 pm

When it comes down to it, its all a little bit like the schoolyard, isn't it? Great post, by the way. Nice treatment to the bots, too :)


Gina SuuperG Stark April 7, 2011 at 3:39 pm

It so is! I've lately been a bit bombarded by grumpy people angry at me for unfollowing them for direct spam (tweets with my name in them to solicit me)…*sigh*…I remind myself that we are all entitled to create the experience we want to have, and hopefully, that a few others want to enjoy with us! Thank you for visiting and for your comments :) Cheers! G


@Erica__B July 27, 2011 at 1:23 pm

Haha!! I loved this post Gina!

I was one of those who always worried about being unfollowed and wondered how I could improve my twitter stream. Until I realized that… YES… there are certain categories of unfollowers and it shouldn't be taken personal.

I guess we all fall in the category of being "unfollowers', but our reasons differ.

We learn a little each day, especially on social networks such as Twitter.

The important thing is, that we should keep engaging and spreading Love, Light and Happiness :)

Stay Suuper…. G! :)


Gina SuuperG Stark July 29, 2011 at 1:22 pm

Yay! Thank youu, Erica ;) I like your philosophy of staying positive on Twitter (and of course elsewhere in our lives ;) ) and I'm glad some of my post resonated with you on the quirkiness of some unfollowing practices! Please stop by again. But even if you don't … I promise I won't unfollow you! heehee ;) xo Gina


@NataliaSylv August 24, 2011 at 9:49 am

Love this! One thing I've noticed, I guess along the lines of the Stoopid Strategy, is people who constantly follow me, unfollow me, then follow me again, in hopes that I'll notice them and eventually follow back. Like you mention, it's such wasted time. If they used the time it takes to follow/unfollow/rinse/repeat to just take a moment and start a conversation, they'd have a much better experience.


Gina SuuperG Stark August 24, 2011 at 10:30 am

Hi Natalia! Thanks so much for visiting and for your awesome input on the following conundrum ;) I have added a new theory/suspicion since I wrote this and that is of large companies opening massive numbers of Twitter accounts with the SOLE purpose of getting followers, to then "sell" an established account to someone not wanting to invest the time building a Twitter presence. It's #1) not officially permitted by Twitter and #2) Really not effective. Those businesses buying the "established" accounts have no idea how worthless 5,000 followers are if they are just the same type of accounts only looking to build numbers. But there! I said it and hopefully it can be a caveat for an unsuspecting small business. It really is true, there are no shortcuts in life (or business!) ;)) Cheers and thanks again for participating in the discussion! Gina


@NancyMDickinson February 6, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Good post here – my biggest pet peeve are the one in the #3 slot – the Stoopid Strategy…

I get these all the time and it annoys the heck out of me. I don't follow everyone who follows me (read: there's some porn tweets out there I have no use for) but if you fit into MY strategy of getting on the radar of other travel sites, I'm hitting the follow button.

I now intend to go through my "following" people regularly and see who's doing it to me.


Gina SuuperG Stark February 6, 2012 at 2:48 pm

Thank you for reading and contributing, Nancy :) I have since found a tool that I think is golden…it not only reveals who is not following you (that's OK with me, often times) but it lists who has UNfollowed you which is often just done as a strategy. It's called Who Unfollowed Me and here is the link: Happy tweeting! Gina


Ben Martin Social_Ben June 25, 2012 at 1:40 pm

What a great read. Captivating too


Helen Dewdney November 12, 2012 at 2:37 pm

I did join Tweepi thinking that I'd get people with similar interests to follow, but there's too many teenagers (no option to block them following you!) and idiots. So stopped following using it. You can see many before me have done the same, people with no "seeds" to offer so if you follow them it's because you want to follow that person because they seem interesting to you. People follow to get "seeds" so people follow them. So………. when someone followed and unfollowed before I even knew they followed I named and shamed. Frequently. Told all my followers what said person had done. Sometimes it got RT'd by others (presumably other Tweepi users). Time wasting but then Twitter is, and it frankly, I'm bloody minded and it amused me.


Gina SuuperG Stark November 15, 2012 at 9:24 pm

Hi Helen and thanks for sharing your experience with it. I find I must decide how I spend my "wasted time" on Twitter and I spend very little time seeking out who followed and/or unfollowed. I don't love the idea that some people go after my follow just to drop off and unfollow and make their numbers look impressive. Yawn. ;) I'd rather just enjoy the experience of sharing, learning, connecting, etc. Thanks for spending the time to comment! :) Cheers, Gina


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