Imagine you’re walking through your local mall. You aren’t really hungry, but you smell something delicious wafting towards you from the food court. So, you take a little detour and discover a friendly lady standing in front of one of the stalls holding out a tray of steaming hot pieces of… whatever. She smiles warmly and offers you a single bite, skewered on a toothpick. “Would you like to try one?” she asks sweetly. Mouth already watering, you reach out and take the sample. It’s delicious. Instantly, your eyes wander to the stall behind her, checking out the menu and staring longingly at all the food behind the glass. How is it possible that you didn’t realize how ravenous you were until this very moment?
What do you do next?
Do you hang around engaging her in small talk while she nods politely and attempts to work around you? Do you ask for another bite? And another? Do you insist that she let you have a few more since you’ll definitely be a regular customer if you really like the food? When she asks you if you’d like to place an order, do you get offended since you thought you two were getting along so well? Do you ask her to read you the price of each item on the menu, just in case you decide you want to come back another time? Do you offer her unsolicited advice on how to better season the food so that she’ll get more customers? Do you complain about not being able to afford to eat there as you stuff another few pieces into your mouth? Or do you thank her for the sample and either order a plate or keep on walking?
If you’re a well adjusted and socialized human being with a general understanding of salesperson/buyer relationships, you do the latter. You realize that those are samples. Little tastes to entice you to actually purchase something. You realize that that woman is doing a job. Passing around bites of food isn’t a hobby for her and while she may enjoy the work she’s doing, it is still just that— work. She may be sweet, friendly, and informative, but you can bet your ass that you’ll be getting mall security called on you if you start abusing her good nature.
Now think of Heaux-Twitter (as I like to refer to our sexy little corner of the Twittersphere) as a food court and each lady that you interact with as a hawker with her little tray of samples. Each tweet, video clip, and photo is a sample of what you might get if you were to book a date with her. They’re provided happily to all of HT in the hopes that at least some people will actually buy something. Now consider your own behavior. Are you enjoying the free sample and moving on until you’re ready to book her? Or are you monopolizing her time begging for more photos, sliding into her DMs with empty promises of bookings you know damn well you aren’t going to follow through on, or offering business advice that she neither asked for nor wants? Are you sending her daily messages full of compliments that won’t pay her bills? It’s okay, not everyone fully understands Twitter etiquette right off the bat. Just like I’m sure your mama had to tell you not to take 4 pieces of orange chicken from the “Take One!” tray at the mall when you were a kid— someone has to teach you these things. So, for your education, may I present:
A Primer in Heaux-Twitter Etiquette for the Modern Man:
Likes: Basically the equivalent of a thumbs up. A like on a lady’s content is a friendly, non-invasive way of saying, “Cool!” or “I agree!”. Likes don’t really do much except for show that you’ve seen and enjoyed something that she posted. A perfectly safe way to interact.
Retweets: Using my food court analogy, a retweet is kind of like taking a few samples and then sharing them with your friends. It says, “Guys, you’ve got to try this! It’s delicious!” and amplifies the voice of the provider. The more retweets that something gets, the more eyes see it. This is a great way of promoting a provider that you like without being a creep.
Comments: This is where things get a little tricky. Just as in real life conversations, not every thought that passes through your head needs an audience. Be picky about how often you choose to comment on a lady’s tweets. A compliment is always nice, and some stories are great for sharing, but if you find yourself tweeting a string of heart eye emoji after every single thing she posts, you probably want to tone it down. Oh, and please try and steer clear of inserting yourself into conversations that have nothing to do with you. Example:
Direct Messages: 90% of the time, there is no reason to send a provider a direct message. “But I just have to tell her how beautiful she is!” No. “But I have a great idea for her next photoshoot/ad/city to visit!” No. “But we had a date 7 months ago and I wanted to reminisce with her!” No. If you’re really that desperate to talk to her, there’s one foolproof method for getting her attention: spend money. Either book a date, send her a gift card, or buy something off of her wishlist. You may not be able to buy her love, but you can certainly buy your way into her DMs. And don’t even THINK about sending her a photo. Not of your dick (flaccid, hard, or in silhouette), not of your dog, not of your last meal. If you still aren’t sure whether or not you should send her a message, see below:
Now then, that wasn’t so bad was it? Honestly, Heaux-Twitter isn’t really that much different than real life. You’ll get a lot further if you aren’t obnoxious, show your appreciation, and think before you speak. Act like a boorish mansplaining piece of garbage on the other hand and you’ll likely find yourself screenshotted and made an example of by your favorite gal. Now, go forth and tweet responsibly. I’ll be the girl posting articles about cheese and the occasional GIF of my boobs.