Eric Johnson over at his blog Cybernetic Inkwell brings up some interesting ideas when it comes to the online etiquette of following/friending on the internet especially in regards to whether museums ought to follow back those who follow them on Twitter. In his practice as an institutional social media manager he generally does not follow his followers, “mostly for reasons of convenience along with a little twist of gut says not to thrown in.” But upon reflection he reconsiders, “Why ever not? Aren’t these the people we want to build a relationship with?” On one hand, how else does an institution show honest appreciation to the people who follow them? Twitter doesn’t provide a whole lot of ways to say “Hey, you’re an individual we want to be connected to.” But on the other hand, wouldn’t a one-off @ reply of thanks do the trick there? “@visitorperson, we saw you started following us today. Thanks so much!” Or should the museum ask the follower if they want to be followed back?
Why shouldn’t a museum follow its visitors? Is it to keep their own feeds tidy? Why would an individual really care if they are followed by the museum or not? Is it the social media equivalent of ignoring someone at a party?
check out his full post here,