Friday Follow #ff: Functional or Frivolous?

I have previously written about the notion of followership on twitter (distinct from the leadership concept which is equally as important!) and would like to ‘follow’ it up with a muse on #ff. A quick guide to what #ff actually means can be found here.

Those on Twitter will know as Friday morning comes around some people go to great lengths to include as many of their twitter colleagues in #ff lists. I always feel a little awkward about watching people list either:

i) the same people each and every week or

ii) fill as many people as possible behind or in front of the #ff as they can.

I feel awkward not because it really bothers me what they are doing but because I actually secretly enjoy getting a #ff but never really have the inclination to do #ff spamming myself. There is also something unsettling about what to do when you have received an #ff – do you have to #ff back? do you even have to acknowledge it at all?

I have #ff a number of people but I do try to choose people that I think others really should follow i.e not selecting close friends who have only tweeted 3 times in their entire life. But I often ponder if I am just being a miserly kill joy. There is something quite warming about a collection of people simply being nice to each other in a very public way. In fact there are few things, other than a ‘like’ on Facebook, which are as easy to publicly demonstrate your support, friendship or commoradie with others.

Currently healthcare is taking a bit of beating in the media, is under constant reform and moral is particularly low. Those who use social media to unwind or refresh from the constant pressure of clinical activity could easily be forgiven for celebrating a bit of shared good feeling. So maybe a random #ff , which actually may not be hugely beneficial for your followers, may actually be very beneficial for the recipient. Furthermore given the fact the art of simply smiling at work is clearly something health care professionals would like to see more of (NHS Change Day Interim report) a simple #ff is maybe what everyone needs.

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