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How to Use Twitter

How to Use Twitter - Inside UW Health, About Us, UW Health Websites and Social Media, UW Health Social Media


Other Social Media

UW Health is on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Google+, Instagram and Pinterest too. Like and follow UW Health on social media.

What is Twitter and why is it useful?

Twitter is an information sharing network made up of 140-character messages called tweets. Tweets can include text, links or photos. It's an easy way to discover the latest news related to subjects and people you are interested in.

Once you sign up, you find people and accounts to follow. Messages from those users show up on your home page feed for you to read. It’s like being delivered a newspaper whose headlines you’ll always find interesting – you can discover news as it’s happening, learn more about topics that are important to you, and get the inside scoop in real time.

Learn more about getting started on twitter.com.

How to Use Twitter

Most people access Twitter via an app on their smart phone but it can also be accessed via the internet on a computer at twitter.com.

Guess what … you don't have to send a single tweet to use Twitter.

One of the easiest ways to use Twitter is to simply follow who/what you are interested in. Once you follow someone, you'll see their tweets on your timeline/home page. You can follow celebrities, comedians, brands and organizations, like UW Health.

Follow your news outlets of choice to keep up-to-date on what's happening around the world and in your areas of interest. When you are browsing a website that you enjoy visiting, look for the Twitter symbol (a blue bird), to find their Twitter handle.

People can also follow you, unless you make your account private.

Twitter Lingo

Twitter Handle

Your Twitter handle is what you call yourself on Twitter. It starts with the @ symbol. UW Health’s main Twitter account handle is @uwhealth.

Hashtag #

Did you ever wonder where the term “Hashtag” originated? It’s from Twitter! Hashtags are used to identify a popular topic. You can use a #hashtag to search Twitter for conversations around a topic. Popular hashtags will become ‘trending topics’ on Twitter. They are also useful for following tweet chats, tweets about a common event like a conference, award show, TV program, etc.

Retweet or RT

If you find a tweet interesting you can retweet it which simply means you share it with all of your followers.


You can reply to the sender and tell them what you think of their tweet. A reply will be visible to anyone who follows both you and the recipient (your mutual followers). A reply always start with @ symbol followed by the user's Twitter handle. Replies create a ‘conversation’ on Twitter.

Twitter Mention

Another option is to mention a user or include their Twitter handle in your tweet. Anyone who follows you, plus the recipient will see this message. For example, if you wanted to mention UW Health’s flagship account, you would use @uwhealth. For example, a tweet might read: Thank you @uwhealth for sharing that great information!

Direct Message or DM

A direct message is a tweet sent only to one other person. It’s only visible to you and the person to whom you sent the DM.


Tweetchats are a pre-arranged chat that happens on Twitter through tweets. To participate, you include the hashtag for the tweetchat in your tweets. Search for the Hashtag to follow the virtual conversation.

Find more Twitter lingo: https://support.Twitter.com/articles/166337-the-Twitter-glossary