Ever wish there were a manual on how not to say something stupid on social media? Well, if you’re a politician, now there is. The "Twitter Government and Elections Handbook" was put together last year by the social network's political partnerships team to teach politicians and their flunkies the ways of the tweeting arts. You can download it here.
The manual isn’t specifically meant to keep politicos out of trouble. Instead, it’s supposed to be a guide to the service for high-profile accounts. "It's been wildly popular," Twitter manager Bridget Coyne told NPR today. People frequently contact Coyne’s team with questions as they start using Twitter, she said. That was the guidebook’s genesis. Next in store are updates to include tips on using live-streaming app Periscope, Coyne says.
"It's been wildly popular."
You can peruse the guide for such gems as "what is Twitter?" (page 25) and "you don't have to ask permission to follow" (page 39). It also appears to be very comprehensive, starting with the absolute basics and going all the way up to expert-level techniques. Those include using Twitter Q&As (page 80), mastering Tweetdeck (page 102), and advice on avoiding the haters, using "tailored mentions" and "notification filters" (page 114-115). Of course, the manual wouldn't be all that useful for public officials if it didn't have a page dedicated to deleting the things you have said. You can accomplish that by tapping "the trash can icon at the bottom of the Tweet" (page 30). You probably should.