Twitter Lists

Twitter lists are underrated.  I use them to create special interest lists for each job I’m in and sometimes even for different projects on the job.  I idly browse them while taking a short break or while eating lunch at my desk.  I love the way I can passively keep up to date and go more in depth if I like.  Twitter lists are good because you don’t have to officially follow someone to keep up with what they are doing.  This I like for people I don’t agree with, because I do want to keep up with what they are doing and I make sure my policy-related lists have varying viewpoints.

Things to know about Twitter lists:

  • Though you don’t become an official follower of the person, and hence don’t “count” in their reach or measures of popularity, they do know that you added them to a list.
  • Twitter lists are great when you’ve maxed out on followers.  For some reason, Twitter likes to keep a certain ratio between followers and follows.  The max number of followers the beginner can have is 2,000.  When you have varied interests and projects, you’d be surprised how quickly you can grow to 2,000 followers.  At this point, Twitter stops you until you get some more followers.  Lists are a nifty way around this as you can add seemingly unlimited people to lists.

Some of my Twitter lists:

  • Labor and Employment Twitter List– employment lawyers, unions, advocacy groups (both liberal and conservative), international labor organizations, including non U.S. labor departments.  I view this list almost every day and am constantly tweaking who is in and who is out.
  • Immigration – A less well curated list with emphasis on pro-immigrant groups.  It does have Numbers USA and other anti-immigration groups.
  • Tim Ferris Show Guests – a list of all guests who have appeared on the Tim Ferris Show podcast, with exceptions explained here.

Searching for a Twitter list

This proves surprising difficult.  Whatever functionality Twitter used to have, it doesn’t seem to have anymore.  I had the best luck with this tool.

Copying a Twitter list

If you like a Twitter list, but want to filter out some of its voices or add your own, you can copy it to your own account using this tool.  Create a blank list in your account first.


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