Twitter Follows Facebook with Suggested Accounts

By Clint Boulton  |  Posted 2010-07-31

Twitter July 30 began testing "Suggestions for You," a small but potentially engaging feature geared to expose users to more of the 100 million accounts on the microblog.

Suggestions will appear under the Find People section sandwiched between the "Browse Interests" and "Find People" tabs on

Users who like a suggestion they see can click to follow per usual, or click hide to wish that account away from the suggestions they may see.

Most users aren't searching Twitter the way they search Google, Bing and other search engines, or using the hash tag to find common topics, themes and memes.

This minimizes the likelihood that they will bump into other users and commercial accounts that might interest them.

This, in turn, tempers the usefulness of the Website because if people aren't connecting with others, they're not sharing more information, which is the currency of any social network that wants to show users more ads and deals.

Suggestions for You aims to change that on Twitter by using relevance algorithms that gauge what users are interested in and who they know on Twitter.

The utility suggests people and accounts that users don't already follow but may find interesting. Twitter said suggestions are based on people users follow and the people they follow.

Over time, users will see recommendations for similar users when they see another account's profile.

Twitter is trying to follow Facebook's success in helping people find other people with similar interests. Indeed, Suggestions for You apes Facebook's popular "People You May Know" suggestions on the right of users' homepages.

Twitter said it will offer an API to help developers make these features available in their desktop, mobile and Web applications.

Read what others are saying about the Suggestions for You tool on TechMeme here.

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