In 2020, it’s hard to imagine that there are people out there who still don’t know how to use Twitter. But believe you me, they exist: in fact, as of 2020, pretty much most of Americans don’t actually use Twitter. That’s right, only 7% of the American population actually use Twitter, or, 1 in 13 people. That’s only 17 million out of the reported 330 million monthly active users in the microblogging site.
So if you’re one of the other 87% of the non-tweeting population, don’t worry: it’s not as weird as you think. And if you’ve finally caved into the social media peer pressure and actually signed up for an account, you could be a little confused by the Twitter interface. Again, not weird, considering that the Twitter UI does need a little bit of getting used to it.
We collected some of the most pressing questions Twitter newbies have and tried to answer all of them. We skipped the super basic questions, and moved to the questions about functionality, for example:
How Do I See Comments on Twitter?
Some people have a hard time seeing the comments on a particular tweet. And it’s a pretty simple problem to solve.
To see comments on Twitter, simply go to a tweet and click/tap on it. You can also try to click/tap on the speech bubble right underneath the tweet. However, if you only want to see the comments in a specific RT, just go straight to the Retweet itself and click/tap the speech bubble from there.
Do this, and it will show all the comments of that particular thread. If you want to know who viewed your twitter, on the other hand, well you can’t, at least, not really.
How Do You Use Hashtags?
Also known as the ‘pound’ sign in the pre-smartphone/tablet era, the hashtag as a digital tool originated with Twitter in 2007. Back then, it was a simple text string that signified that a tweet was about a specific issue, topic, or trend e.g. a tweet that says ‘I burnt my lasagna #FML’ would indicate that it was part of the ‘F My Life’ trend. Another example: a tweet that would say ‘Eminem has arrived at the #Grammys2008’ would indicate that the tweet was talking about the 2008 Grammy Awards.
Prior to 2013, hashtags were just that: a symbol you put in a tweet. By 2013, Twitter made hashtags into a clickable link that showed you all the tweets in the Twitterverse that contains that hashtag. To use a hashtag, simply pick a trending hashtag and type it into your tweet.
Usually, hashtags are put at the end of a tweet (see examples above), or as part of the sentence itself (for example: ‘I can’t wait for #Galbraith5 to come out!’). Either way, it will indicate to the Twitter system that this tweet is part of a larger conversation, and it will show up in other people’s hashtag searches.
How Do You Delete Your Twitter History?
This one is a bit more difficult. Because of how Twitter can be sometimes toxic, especially with the whole ‘callout culture’ thing going around, some newbies (and some Twitter vets too) might feel a little uneasy about their tweets. In our digital world, unfortunately, context is lost online, so sometimes even the most innocuous tweets can spark an entire discussion about a controversial issue. If it’s bad enough, people could even #cancel you (it’s Twitter speak for bullying you off the platform).
So how does one delete their Twitter history without deleting their profile? Well, you’ll have to either delete your tweets one by one (which isn’t much of a problem if you’re new) or use a third-party app. unfortunately, those are the only two ways that you could effectively erase yourself off the platform.
You could, theoretically, archive your tweets so you can save a copy of your tweets in your email. This could be an alternative to deleting your entire twitter history, but if you want to completely erase yourself from the Twitter timeline, you’ll need outside help.
But using a third-party app to delete your Twitter history won’t just delete your tweets: it’s also going to delete what you search on Twitter, saved tweets, and all these other things, so think twice before using an outside platform.