When it comes to lists on Twitter I’m of two minds. I take it as a compliment every time I’m added to one, but for me personally I don’t use them and even if I did I probably wouldn’t make them public. Before I explain why I like them I should just come out and say that I think they can be a bit more clique’ish than I want to push out on to other people. Let’s say I make a list called “People I admire” and forget to actually add someone that I do admire. That person looks at the list, sees that they’re not there and thinks wtf? It adds a layer of relational socialization that could cause harm out of a careless mistake. Plus in TweetDeck I have filters that act as the same things as lists.
So why do I like being on lists? Aside from the number it really helps me know how people categorize my tweets. One service that anyone can use is www.mustexist.com/list_tags/ All someone has to do is add a twitter name and it collects all the names of Twitter lists associated with that person. Using that site I could get an idea about myself http://www.mustexist.com/list_tags/michaelsurtees I talk about design a lot, so seeing that at the top of the list makes sense. After that it diverges a bit which is kind of like my career at this point. After that it’s creatives, ux and media which all go hand in hand. The data is pretty subjective so I could make a big deal out of any of that info. But it also gives a tip off of how people see me which is a helpful. It’s not going to change how I tweet or the frequency though. And while at the top of the list are fairly general concepts, some of the more detailed from friend’s lists are quite flattering too.
In the past I’ve tried to understand how people see this blog too. One simple measurement has been to see the tags associated with DesignNotes on Delicious. For the most part the list gives a pretty decent slice, though not the whole story. I’ve talked about that in more detail with the post DesignNotes: Talking about my daily experience and observations with design.
I guess with all this info the next question is this, so what? Is there any actionable details to take care of? I suppose if there was one particular subject that I didn’t want to be on that list, I would just stop talking about it. Because I see design as a general philosophy that blurs a lot of categorizations I’m happy to see others that choose to come here feel the same way, or at least know what they’re going to get when they visit.