Judging how worthy you are of being followed with FriendFilter

Twittfilter screenshot

Just announced today, public relations executive, author, and saavy social media intellectual Brian Solis created a new free web application that will allow you to filter through all the noise and hopefully help you make some decisions on whether to follow some people and whether there is some relevancy in how the relationship.

What is this marvelous new invention? Why it’s FriendFilter, of course! Brian Solis, along with the help of “developer extraordinaire” Christopher Peri have put together perhaps a very simplistic, yet detailed and functional application that could very well change the way that we perceive who we follow.

Imagine, if you will, that you receive a bunch of new followers as a result of a specific event you’re at or tweet you made. You want to take a look at all the new followers’ profiles just to see which ones will benefit from your following, but maybe they didn’t make any recent tweets of interest. Should that stop you from following them? Probably not. But you can’t judge them based on who they follow…because practically everyone follows Robert Scoble, Michael Arrington, Pete Cashmore, and, of course, Brian Solis. So how can you decipher who’s worthy? FriendFilter.

Think about when you look for new people to friend on Facebook. You do a search for someone like Scott Beale (known famously as @laughingsquid on Twitter) and you will see how you’re connected. Facebook will tell you that there are X number of mutual friends. This is exactly what FriendFilter does. BUT, it will also act like a Twitter API client as well, allowing you to post, DM, and more.

But when you go to the site, let’s not forget that this is a “fresh of the mind” approach and that there are bound to be a few bugs or user interface issues. For me, while I think that the functionality of FriendFilter is good, there’s some additional directions that need to be listed. First of all, when I went to the signup page, the only area that I thought to go was the form where I inputted my personal information like name, Twitter username & password (uh oh!), and email address. Then when I hit submit, it wasn’t clear to me whether I was successful but there appeared to be an error message that repeated the information I inputted along with my Twitter password – unencrypted! So that’s a major error right there that needs to be rectified especially if I’m on an unsecure network or public computer.

Afterwards, where do I go? I’m guessing I’m signed in, but now you need to go to the Twitfilter page where you can check up to see what people are doing and check the relevancy. Let me repeat that and input the hyperlinks. First you go here to signup and then you go here to do your relevancy check. It’s the same base URL (http://www.twittfilter.com), but you need to signup first before you can do anything else.

Look, I’m not here to bash this web application because I know that it’s only in its infancy. There’s a lot of other things that can be done but the possibility and the features of this application far outweigh some small things that can be addressed. The fact that you can get information that is relevant to you about people who you want to know whether you should follow back is crucial. See who you have mutual friends with. Look at the tag/word cloud to see if it’s something they talk a lot of, like “social media” or “travel” or “bacon”.

Don’t knock it before you try it. Give it a shot and post your own thoughts. I think for an intial setup, it looks pretty good and has some real applicability. Now is there a mobile application?

By Ken Yeung

Ken Yeung is a journalist fascinated with the tech industry and internet culture. He's currently Flipboard's Assistant Managing Editor, overseeing news curation in technology, science, gaming and health. In addition to his day job, Ken's the co-host of "The Created Economy" podcast, examining the Creator Economy. In a past life, he was a former reporter for VentureBeat and The Next Web, covering tech startups, the industry's innovations and funding.