New user FAQs

If your question isn't here, use the search box at the top of this page to search for topics in our Help Center.

What is Twitter?

Twitter is a service for friends, family, and coworkers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent messages. People write short updates, often called "Tweets" of 140 characters or fewer. These messages are posted to your profile, sent to your followers, and are searchable on Twitter search. Learn more about how to use Twitter.

Do I need anything special to use it?

All you need to use Twitter is an internet connection or a mobile phone. Join us here! Once you're in, begin finding and following accounts whose Tweets interest you. We'll recommend great accounts once you're signed up.

What's a Tweet?

A Tweet is any message posted to Twitter, and all are 140 characters or less. Once you've signed up, just type your first Tweet in the update box (shown below). We'll even count the characters for you! Click the Tweet button to post the update  to your profile. If you'd like to learn more about how to tweet, please read this article.

Why 140 characters?

We like to keep it short and sweet! It also just so happens that 140 characters is the perfect length for sending status updates via text message. The standard text message length in most places is 160 characters per message. We reserve 20 characters for people's names, and the other 140 are all yours!

How do I find people to follow?

When you create an account, you can search for people by name or user name, import friends from other networks, or invite friends via email. You can also follow some of the people we've suggested

What does it mean to follow someone on Twitter?

Following someone means you've chosen to subscribe to their Twitter updates. When you follow someone, every time they post a new message, it will appear on your Twitter home page. Read more here.

How do I know who I'm following?

After you click the 'Follow' button on someone's profile, you're following them. See a list of people you're following by clicking on the following link on your profile page or on your home page's sidebar.

How do I know who is following me?

Twitter sends you an email when someone new follows you. Set up your email preferences to notify you when you have a new follower. The 'Followers' link on your profile page or home page's sidebar will also tell you who is following you.

What are follow limits?

Twitter has follow and update limits for stability and abuse control. You can read more about this here.

Who reads my updates?

Your followers read your Tweets. If your Tweets are public, anyone who runs a search for a keyword in your Tweet may be able to see that message. Your Tweets are public by default; if you're hesitant to have people you may not know read your updates, protect your Tweets to approve followers and keep your updates out of search.

How can I send updates to Twitter?

Read our article about how to post a Tweet. You can tweet from, from your phone, or from an application. 

Can I put my Twitter updates on my blog?

Yes! Put a Twitter widget on your blog or website – anywhere that accepts Javascript or HTML.

What are @replies?

If a message begins with @username, meaning it was directed to another user, it is an @reply. Click the Reply button on another person's Tweet to reply to it. Please note that if your Tweets are protected, users who are not following you will not see your @replies or mentions. Read more here.

What are direct messages?

Direct messages are personal messages sent from one Twitter account to another; they do not appear in public for anyone else to read. You can only send a direct message to a person who follows you. Read more here.

What is the difference between an @reply and a direct message?

An @reply is a public message sent regardless of follow-ship. Anyone can view it (if your Tweets are public). A direct message can only be sent by someone you follow, and can only be seen by the sender and intended recipient.

Can I edit a Tweet once I've posted it?

No. Once a Tweet has been posted, it can't be changed. You can delete a Tweet by clicking the trash icon on the right end of it.

What's a Retweet (RT)?

A retweet is a re-posting of someone else's Tweet. Read more here.

Why can't I see all my Tweets? Are they lost?

We store all your Tweets. You can click the Me tab to view up to 3200 of your most recent Tweets in your profile timeline. To view more, you can download your Twitter Archive and browse a snapshot of your Twitter information, starting with your first Tweet.

How do I post a picture to Twitter?

Uploading and sharing images on is easy! You can find step-by-step instructions and more FAQ here.

How do I report spam?

We have a whole article about how to report spam on Twitter. Please read it. We encourage you to always block any spammers you find. 

Why are accounts suspended?

Accounts are suspended for Terms of Service violations or spam investigation. Read more about this here.

Where can I find out more information about Twitter's Terms of Service?

Twitter's Terms of Service is posted on the website, and the Twitter Rules are posted in the Help Center. 

How do I submit a complaint about copyright, impersonation, trademark, or other Terms of Service issues?

Review our Terms of Service section to find out what constitutes a violation, and how to go about fixing a related problem.

Having trouble?

Check out our troubleshooting section for solutions to common problems.

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