It’s not hard to find a service that will allow you to schedule updates around your social networks. If you’re like me and have followers spread across timezones, the idea of being able to provide an update in the middle of the night your time, tea-time their time, is pretty appealing.
But is it ethical?
Twitter, to me, is a real time conversation tool. When I read a Tweet from someone, I expect them to be on the other end of it (or at least near Twitter).
I expect that, if I reply to the Tweet with a request for more information or to follow on the conversation, that I’ll get an answer in the near-ish future.
But if the other person is asleep, swimming, or skipping through a field of daisies and using a Twitter scheduling service, they’re not on the other end of their Tweet. They won’t be replying anytime soon.
Isn’t that advertising pretending to be conversation?*
I don’t think that’s particularly ethical.
However, the flip side is that by not scheduling Tweets, you could be missing your target audience’s ‘sweet spot’ in their own timezone.
So what’s the answer? Is Twitter scheduling ethical, or not? Do the benefits of increased visibility outweigh making the audience wait for an answer?
Does it even matter? I’m fascinated to hear your opinion because I simply don’t know…
*(BTW Read this from Andrew Schiestal – as an adjunct to the above. I think that you’ll like it.)