Twitter has changed how new users just signing up find others on the app. Rather than the old, random, Suggested User list of (mostly) celebrities, Twitter has installed a new Suggestions list based on topics. The change was officially announced on the Twitter blog today.
Each of about twenty categories (including Books, Fashion, Tech, and the like) has a floating list of users that Twitter keeps track of. Active users are Twitter are categorized by the subject matter of their posts and their activity level. Those who are most active in each category will be featured. The list is dynamic, so whoever’s there today might not be tomorrow.
Current memes, such as Haiti (the current one), are created by the staff as well, so that users can more easily find news and relevant information. These are hand-picked by the staff of Twitter and will change as the news stream shifts with new events.
TechCrunch, of course, likes the new changes, but laments the new inability to mass follow those on the lists that come up. At least they disclose that this is because they’re on the Suggested User list (under Technology). So far, no word from Ashton Kutcher, but I’m sure he hates this new development.
Interestingly, Tumblr came out with something very similar to the new Twitter Suggested User list on their site as well. It doesn’t seem to be as well thought out, however. As Andrew Mager on ZDNet points out, though, anything is an improvement when it comes to linking social media users. Especially when compared to the old “surf and hunt fruitlessly for an hour or just give up” choices.