How to Make Twitter Better
Allow users to create tiered levels of people they follow.
You always see Tweets from people in tier one, however, in tiers two through however far Twitter decided to go with it, Tweets get rationed on the basis of time of day and number of Tweets coming from tiers two through whatever. Twitter should include other factors such as time zone and overall Tweet popularity (you don't want to miss important and/or viral stuff from accounts not in your top tier).
By going this route, Twitter puts an end to the annoying follow/unfollow dichotomy.
If somebody you follow starts Tweeting stupid political stuff around election time, you can simply banish him to a crappy tier for a few weeks. If a (cough, cough) adult film celebrity you follow Tweets too many Instagrams of herself, you can adjust the frequency with which they hit your feed.In many ways, my idea imitates, but purposely doesn't duplicate what Facebook (FB) did recently. Mark Zuckerberg tweaked your Facebook feed so that you do not see every single thing every single one of your friends posts. From what I can tell, the new system works well. I no longer get Mafia Wars and other game requests constantly. Some of my more annoying friends rarely, if ever, show up. I can, however, manually see how much I see or if I see anything at all from individual friends. That's personalization. Next up, better "discovery" a la Pandora (P). While thumbs up, thumbs down might fit the format, I want to see Twitter devise more sophisticated algorithms for suggesting other people to follow. Right now it's pretty simple. You follow finance guys, so Twitter suggests you follow more finance guys. At least that's how it seems. If you could rate Tweets -- some or maybe all -- on several variables, Twitter could do a better job of getting the people in front of you that you should be following. When I use Pandora, it does two extraordinary things for me. One, it pulls up music I forgot I even liked. Two, it allows me to discover songs and artists that otherwise would not have made it across my desk. Pandora does both of these things incredibly well. Twitter doesn't. Discovery on Twitter is not as easy and automatic as it should be. While it has improved and keeps getting better, the user doesn't have enough control over the personalization and discovery processes. These are two areas where Facebook and Pandora outclass what Twitter. At the time of publication the author is long FB and P. Follow @rocco_thestreet
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