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This article was published on December 11, 2009

Has Twitter’s ‘Follow Friday’ Had Its Day?

Has Twitter’s ‘Follow Friday’ Had Its Day?
Tim Difford
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Tim Difford

A leading innovator in the IT Outsourcing industry, Tim is often on the move but can be regularly found in Manchester and London, UK. His f A leading innovator in the IT Outsourcing industry, Tim is often on the move but can be regularly found in Manchester and London, UK. His focus is on social and mobile technologies but given half a chance he'll try to sneak music or football into his blog-posts. Tim can be found at One Greener Day and you can also follow @timdifford on Twitter.

followfriday‘Follow Friday’ is the weekly Twitter tradition where users attach the hashtag #followfriday to share the Twitter ID’s of their favourite friends and news sources with followers.

It might still be the the biggest Trending Topic on Twitter every Friday, but is its popularity fading?  This graph, which shows the phrase’s popularity amongst all Tweets over the past six months, would suggest so.

As new members continue to flock to Twitter, are Follow Friday’s original aims being lost?

The meme, which only began in January 2009, began to attract criticism from the blogs not long after it became popular.

Follow Friday has been decried as ‘disingenuous and spammy’ by some, as commercial organisations saw it as a way to to promote goods, services and offers, whilst everyday Twitter users simply reciprocated any #followfriday mentions they received by sending a simple reciprocal Tweet straight back, with little thought.

A new App in the iTunes App Store this week will do little to offset this criticism.  Follow Friday Generator automatically generates a #followfriday tweet for you based on the people you talk to most.

This is fine, but your most chatty followers might not be the ones you wish to recommend to your network.  On testing the service, it came up with the people I’d chatted to most recently over the past few days rather than over time, so I expect that the list it creates will change each week.

Seeing as I now have the app, I’ll stick with it for a while to see what happens.  If you are new to Twitter and haven’t discovered the joys of #followfriday yet, maybe give the app a try or simply do it the ‘old-fashioned’ way and manually create your own short list of those on Twitter that you think your followers will most enjoy reading.