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Monday, Sep. 15, 2014

Twitter for novices

Posted Thursday, August 11, 2011, at 3:27 PM

How to sign up for Twitter

--Go to Twitter.com

--On the left side of the screen fill in your full name, email and password. Click the yellow "Sign up" box.

--The next screen will repeat your information and generate a username for you. You can change this username if you want. Click "Create my account."

--The next screen will ask you for your interests. Click a topic and Twitter will generate popular organizations, businesses and people related to that topic.

--Click "+ Follow" to follow a tweeter. When you've successfully followed someone the box will turn green. To unfollow them click the green box, and it will turn red.

--When you've finished weeding through your interested, click the blue box at the bottom of the screen "Next Step: Friends."

--Use the friends feature to send out messages to your friends to invite them to Twitter or click the gray box at the bottom of the screen "Skip import."

Understanding Twitter

--The next screen you see is your Twitter feed also known as your "Home." This chronologically lists updates from anyone that you've chosen to follow. You use the "Home" tab at the top of this page to return to this screen.

--Underneath the heading "What's Happening" is a white box. Click in the box to begin typing your first tweet. As you type the counter in the bottom right corner will count off how many characters you have left. If you go over 140, the number will turn red and a negative sign will pop up to show you how many characters you've gone over. It won't let you send the tweet if it is too long.

--Don't know what to tweet? Feel free to say hello to use at The Democrat-News. To do this type @MarshallMoNews [insert message here]. Then click "Tweet."

--The "Profile" tab at the top the screen will list a chronological order of anything that you've tweeted or retweeted.

--The "Messages" tab can be used to send private messages back and forth between people you follow that also follow you.

--The "Who to Follow" tab will automatically generate more people Twitter thinks you might be interested in following.

--To search for specific people to follow use the "Who to Follow" tab. In the white "search" box on the screen type "The Marshall Democrat-News." MarshallMoNews will be listed a little more than halfway down the page. Click "+Follow." The follow box will turn green.

--To change your settings click your username in the upper right corner. The drop-down menu will take you to "settings."

--In settings you can alter your email address, user name, time zone, language, design settings and photos by clicking the tabs at the top of the page.

--To set up mobile notifications click the mobile tab and type in your cell phone number. The instructions to the left hand side of the screen will explain how to get updates sent to your phone.

Tweeting effectively

--Return to the "Home" page and click in the "What's Happening" box.

--To refer to/reply to a tweeter in one of your tweets, type their username after an @ symbol example:

@MarshallMoNews Who was arrested for 106 lbs of pot?

Then someone at the paper will reply with

@yourusername The Missouri State Highway Patrol arrested a woman from Aurora, Colorado.

--To retweet or repost something someone else has said, scroll your cursor over the bottom of the tweet. Click the "retweet" icon between favorites and "reply."

--If you want to discuss a certain topic you can use a hashtag such as #SalineCounty #HarryPotter #Obama. After you type one of these into your tweet and tweet it, you can click on it to see what people you don't follow are saying about the topic.

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Maggie Menderski graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism degree from the University of Missouri in May 2011. The St. Louis native began working as a staff writer for the Democrat-News shortly after. In her Out of Ink blog, she (typically) muses about the differences between rural and suburban life.
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