Twitter Karma is my favorite application for managing Twitter friends and followers. It’s especially great for people who have a lot of connections. I’m regularly surprised other applications have not included bulk actions the way Twitter Karma does. The killer features are “bulk follow” and “bulk unfollow”. If you want to follow all of your followers for instance, you can just “select all”, then click “Bulk Follow” and that’s all there is to it. No need for individual clicks. Also, because you can sort your connections in order of most recent tweet activity, the people who have never updated or stopped using the system sink to the bottom and can be isolated for your actions. Here is a step by step process of how I use the tool every couple of weeks to clean up my account. I tend to get rid of most of the people who have dropped me, and follow most of the people who have followed me:
At the time of this writing I am following 4373 people and have 4608 people following me:
Once I’m logged into my Twitter account, I head over to Twitter Karma at http://dossy.org/twitter/karma/ and click “Whack!” to let the app run:
This can take quite some time to process depending on how many connections you have. Remember that the time it takes is not an indication of how crappy Twitter Karma is; if you have a lot of connections it takes a long time because Twitter Karma is going to render them out for you all on one page. If you do have a lot of connections, go have a sandwich or clean your room and come back in five or ten. It’s worth the wait. Eventually a page like this will appear:
In the above screenshot, you can see how Twitter Karma lays out the connection on the page but what you cant see here is that I was able to scroll the very long page as Twitter Karma rendered all 4627 of my friends on the same page. Yes, that’s right, thats a lot of pictures to load on one page and it takes a long time to scroll down to the end. But as seen in the screenshot below, the first thing I do is select “Only Followers” to display all of the people who are following me, but who I’m not following yet:
Since everyone is sorted by “time of most recent tweet”, as you can see above, there are many active users with recent updates who are following me so I am inclined to follow them back. However, as you can see below, at the end of my list, there are many people who follow me, but have never updated. If they have never updated, or have not updated in over 60 days, there is nothing for me to see there so there is no reason for me to follow these people:
Thus, I will check the top half, but not the bottom half, and then select “Bulk Follow”. Now I will be following all of my new connections.
Next I will go on to get rid of the people who I have been following, but recently dropped me. As you can see below, there are a total of 20 people who stopped following me since the last time I checked in. This may because I suck but also happens regularly when people are trying to game the system. They will add you as a friend and then wait for you to add-back, then drop you. This is a method many people use for building up friends while trying to seem cool by only ever following a few people. This is why I dont auto-ad-back people. In the below example, I simply clicked “Check All” then clicked “Bulk Unfollow”. Damn, looks like I was dropped by MCHammer:
Because developers of 3rd party apps like Twitter Karma only get a limited amount of API calls per time period, I’ve noticed that I can only use Twitter Karma once a day. If I try to use it any more, it wont work because I will have used up all of my call requests. It should reset in an hour but I’ve noticed that it can often take a day to reset with this application for some reason. If you have a hard time with Twitter Karma or feel it’s clunky or don’t like the look and feel, I would say that you should lower your expectations and just focus on the crucial functionality. It has a a couple of killer-app features that you can’t get anywhere else and it’s free.