In my morning reading, I once again came across something that is increasingly causing me frustration: having to research a writer’s Twitter handle in order to do them the favor of advancing a link of their work. Not only does this make me angry; it’s also damned foolish.
Here’s the article in question. It’s by Julie Moos of Poynter. Yes, THAT Poynter, a place that certainly should know better. I don’t follow Julie on Twitter, so I don’t know what handle she uses (turns out it’s @juliemmoos). I thought the article was worth passing along to others, but I wasn’t able to give @Julie the link love she deserved, because I didn’t have the time to look it up.
But here’s what bites: why should I have to? If Twitter is so important to creating inbound links for content, why aren’t we making it as easy as possible for people to do just that? No, that’s not precise, for many media companies — Poynter included — automate the process (see the image to the right).
They do so, however, by tying the tweet to the company without mentioning the writer. This may seem like a good branding practice, but it disrespects best practices for the medium itself. It’s just one of many ways companies refuse to acknowledge the importance of personal branding, and that needs to change. I want to promote Julie, and in so doing, promote Poynter. That’s the way it works, folks, and I, for one, am tired of looking up Twitter handles when those who stand to gain should do it for me.
(Note: My Twitter handle appears at the bottom of every post here.)