How to win at twitter

Here is a list of ways to win at twitter*.

1. Start offensive

Get off to a good start by being deliberately offensive right at the start of a debate, and put your opponent on the wrong foot. They’ll be too perturbed, emotional and quite possibly angry to make a rational argument. This is a real win for you, as you can gradually get more reasonable, and then accuse them of bad behaviour.

2. Always have the last word

No matter how petty, how incomprehensible, how inconsequential, or how far from the original disagreement, make sure you get the last tweet in any exchange. Link to cat gifs if you have to, the last person tweeting wins the argument.

3. Be selective

Point to facts that back up your world-view, and nothing that challenges your world-view. Ideally these facts will be true, but they should on no account give the whole story. Then, when somebody points to a fact that challenges your worldview, you can safely say “that does not contradict my fact”, and it sounds like it doesn’t contradict your world-view.

4. Be speculatively rude

Say offensive things about your opponents, and only back down if robustly challenged. Make a show of an apology, delete tweets – you’ll look grown up and gracious if challenged, or the original insult will make your opponents look an idiot if not. Win-win.

5. Use your favourites, retweets

If a friend with your world-view insults, or even counters an opponent, make sure you pile in with retweets and favourites. This will alert all your friends, and they should do the same. This has the double effect of making you feel a part of a team, while simultaneously intimidating your opponent.

6. link to snarky listicles

A bit like subtweeting, but with more characters available.


*If anyone is having a sense of humour failure out there, I categorically do NOT condone these tactics (OK, maybe apart from the last one). Just some things I have noticed. Tweet me @dougmcneall if you have more.


  1. Juvenile nonsense, but I suspect the author believes most of it.

  2. […] Here is a further list of ways to win at Twitter*. Some other ways can be found here. […]

  3. […] that note, I thought I might advertise Doug McNeall’s second installment of his series on how to win at Twitter (which I suspect was partly motivated by yesterday’s Twitter storm over the rather silly Sun […]

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