The Twitter feeds you need to follow

It’s hard to imagine that just eight years ago we were living in a world without Twitter. Ahead of World Social Media Day, @DaveKenny lists the top people everyone should be following.

The Twitter feeds you need to follow

YOU may not be aware of this, but June 27 is World Social Media Day. It’s the one day in the year when everybody goes online and tweets or FBs each other. Which is what they do every day anyway.

Whatever about that, social media never sleeps. It’s a curse and a blessing, keeping long distance friendships alive, transforming news gathering and influencing the outcomes of elections. It makes us laugh, it makes us angry.

You may also be unaware that Twitter was first launched eight years ago on July 17 and that 500m Tweets are sent every day in more than 35 languages. That’s a lot of noise.

Here to celebrate both events is a totally arbitrary guide to Who to Follow on Twitter. It’s presuming you’re new to the microblog.

With 255m monthly active ‘users’, it was a hard list to whittle down. We’ve placed an unbalanced emphasis on Irish Tweeters. The rest will find you. Apologies to anyone who feels they deserve to be on the list…

Twitter Gods

@Stephenfry is the undisputed Big-Hearted Lord of Twitter. He’s a poet, author and comic genius. Here’s one of his gems: ‘I don’t need you to remind me of my age: I have a bladder to do that for me.’ Absolute must-follow.

@The EllenShow Ellen DeGeneres ‘Talk show host, comedian and ice road trucker’. ‘Was gonna go to the gym, but parking lot was so crowded I would’ve had to park 3 blocks away. I’m not walking that far to get on a treadmill.’

@MiriamOCal Smart, gorgeous, sexy, warm… Miriam O’Callaghan is Ireland’s Earth Mama. =In between current affairs quotes you will find lines like:

‘I just set my hair on fire.’

‘A little person in my bed who should be asleep sent my last text — he is now heading to bed...’

@NiallOfficial With 18.7m followers, Niall Horan boy is Ireland’s top tweeter. He says things like ‘Yeaaaaaahhhhhhhhh!’ and ‘So hungry! What am I gonna have for lunch?’ Yawn.

@RickOShea 2FM presenter and collector of trivia, Rick is generous with retweets and a very nice man to boot. Rick shares things like: ‘1 in 10 kids think Ronald Reagan is Ronald McDonald and that George Best was the king of Great Britain.’

@Glinner Father Ted and The IT Crowd creator, Graham Linehan is one of the most popular tweeters in the UK and Ireland. For your delectation: ‘The very, very, very least a man can do on #internationalwomensday is not ask when International Men’s day is.’

@DaraOBriain Bray man, Dara is one of the funniest comedians anywhere. He’s also, possibly, the brainiest Wicklow man on the planet. Okay, so that’s not that difficult.

Describes himself as ‘Infamous Brit-Licker; also been known to hand out free puppies’.

Also good for straight-talking: ‘I’d tweet about #800babies but I’m just exhausted by what monstrous arseholes the Cath. Church were in ireland & how the State let them be.’

Irish comedians

@Jimmy Carr He’s from Limerick, so he’s on the list. ‘You can now get slippers that you can put in the microwave. I think my aunty invented those when she was having a breakdown.’

@TaraFlynn One of Cork’s finest, Tara is an acute observer of the Irish ‘condition’. She’s also very nice and massively optimistic (or delusional). Thus: ‘I know most of ye are watching #WorldCup2014 but there’s going to be only mighty craic in @WorkmansDublin with @DublinImprov at 8pm.’

@CarolGertrude Carol Tobin writes for TV and is a stalwart of the stand-up scene. Wry observer of life. ‘My morning walk was taking me too long so this morning I just walked faster. Result.’

@desbishop If you’re looking for a Chinese/Gaelic/New Yawk-speaking Yank from Tipperary whose dad was nearly James Bond, then look no further.

Arts and crafts

@Sineadgleeson Sinead is the Grand Dame of Irish Arts. As a book scout she discovered @PaulLynchWriter who landed a mega-deal two years ago with Quercus Books.

Also ‘Presenter of @bookshowRTE; Reporter for @RTETheWorks; @antiroom co-founder & Editor of Silver Threads of Hope anthology’. A one-stop shop for the arts.

@beoirfinder You’ve had your arts, now here’s your crafts… This is a useful resource for finding (and promoting) craft beer in Ireland. Includes brewers, cider makers, pubs and bars, Good to keep our native industries alive etc…

Twitter irritaters

@SimonCowell @Vinb @GeorgeHook One wears pants that are too high/big for him, another is too big for his boots, and the last one needs a good boot up the pants. You know which order you come in.

@Ricky Gervais says things like: ‘Always be nice to the haters who are jealous of you... it drives them fucking mad.’

@Piers Morgan says things like: ‘About a week to go until the next school shooting in America.’

Sinead O’Connor. Hard to track down, but never dull. Previously @nomanswoman and POSSIBLY @vampyahslayah Sinead frequently gets into spats with hacks.

Surprising politicians

@GerryAdamsSF Not a spoof account, but throws up some extraordinary tweets. In among comments about Dáil procedure you will find Gerry musing on his cat and reciting poetry. Even doing a little Irish dancing. Sample tweet:

‘Seriously overstretched myself at Pilates this morning.’

@BarackObama The Prez’s account is run by campaign staff, but he occasionally tweets himself under ‘bo’. Tweet: ‘That Kim Kardashian has a HUGE arse.’ Ok, made that up. Actually says things like ‘Same-sex couples should be able to get married’.


@andersoncooper CNN anchor and hero of white-haired men everywhere. ‘Dennis Rodman says North Korea is not that bad. Dennis Rodman is deeply stupid.’

@GarethOConnor Journo and broadcaster, Gareth, is the undisputed king of news curation and all things social media. Sorry @MarkLittle, Gar is the man. Particularly good on world events.

@McCullaghD David is now a Prime Time anchor. One of the smartest whips in the political drawer ad could be the next John Bowman.

@boucherHayes The journo and Drivetime stand-in is always good for one-liners about current affairs.

@RTENews It’s all in the name.

@TheJournal_ie Great for general and offbeat news. Has a huge personality, unlike other news sites. Don’t read the comments though. It also attracts a disproportionate amount of anonymous morons.

Techie types

@damienmulley Owns the internet and knows everything about Twitter (and you know NOTHING). Rick O’Shea says: “He’s more clued up on social media than anyone I know and his instincts are usually spot on.” Enough said.

@joegarde Joe is one of Ireland’s Twitter vets. He’s been online since 1994 and is good for news on future technologies. Steal his lines if you want to pretend that you’re tech-savvy.

@neiltyson Neil deGrasse Tyson is a legendary astrophysicist — way too cool for campus. Makes science interesting.


@bordbia Bord Bia is, guess what, all about Irish food (and drink too).

@eatlikeagirl One of Ireland’s finest food bloggers. A must.

@jozeemac Our own Joe McNamee is our favourite food writer. Bar none.

@gardatraffic For a public service account, Garda Traffic has developed a personality all of its own. Like Hal in 2001: A Space Odyssey.

@MetEireann Just so know when it’s NOT going to rain this summer.

@beautie For all your beauty tips. As if you need them. You’re only gorgeous.

Money men (if you must)

@davidmcw Macker is always good for generating controversy. He also wears Aviator shades, which means he’s cool for an economist.

@GTCost Constantin Gurdgiev is worth following for his debates with @BrianMLucey Or you could get a life.

Funny and interesting

@caitlinmoran Why: “A woman, yes. But still funny.” Must-follow.

@CorkTOD Garrulous Tony O’Donoghue — Ireland’s favourite soccer corr — makes sport interesting (if you’re a non-sporty type).

@MaiaDunphy TV producer, broadcaster and comedy writer. So sweet and pretty it’s hard to believe she was Podge and Rodge’s script editor. Funny, with an edge. Must-follow.

@colmtobin Not the glum-looking author. Irish Twitter’s funniest man. (Put the tenner in a registered letter, Colm.) ‘It’s exhausting. Being Irish. The weight of history. The self-doubt. The constant analysis. The wind.’

@micknugent Whether you agree with his aetheist views or not, the author of I, Keano always has something interesting to say.

@nialler9 The music blogger’s blogger.

@SuzanneDoyleSDC Former MTV bigwig and Bono’s Right Hand Woman, Suzanne is always good for socially aware and left-of-field tweets. Worth following.

@Amyhuberman Author, actress and wife of BOD.

Top Twitter ‘fails’

* Oprah Winfrey once tweeted about how much she loved the Microsoft Surface tablet... from her iPad.

* ‘Sometimes I get emotional over fonts.’ Kanye West wins the prize for Inanest Tweet Ever.

* ‘Why is it that people always try to understand estimate my intelligents?! They should never do that.’ No, they don’t certainly not shouldn’t do that, Mary J Bilge.

* Last year, a picture of Robin Thicke at a party in New York with his arm around an unidentified blonde, was tweeted to his wife. Unfortunately for him, the photo was taken in front of a mirror which showed his hand up her skirt.

* In 2013, David Cameron was mortified by revelations that his official Twitter account followed a high class escorts agency. He stressed that he didn’t manage the accounts personally. Well, at least it was high class.

* ‘In honor of Boston and New England, may we suggest: whole-grain cranberry scones!’ Cookery website Epicurious attempting to market a recipe after the Boston Marathon Bombing.

Top celebs

@KatyPerry Likeable popster, even if she says things like: ‘My friend Cleo told me yesterday that Octopus mate for life and when they find their mate they hold hands in the ocean always!’ World’s Top Tweeter.

@justinbieber Airhead pop stars and history do not mix. Take pop whinger, Justin Bieber. (No please, REALLY take him.) Justin is the second Top Tweeter on the planet. He caused a Twitter storm when he summed up Nazi victim, Anne Frank in the guestbook at her house. “Anne,” wrote the Beebster, “was a great girl. Hopefully she would have been a Belieber.”

@kimKardashian Did she enjoy her Irish honeymoon in Laois? Would anyone? Joke. Laois is great, really. God, she’s annoying, but addictive.

@planetjedward Really, there is no explanation needed.

@Pontifex Pope Francis (come on, he’s a celeb too). His word is sacred. When Il Papa took over from Benedict he soon doubled the papal account’s following.

SteveMartinToGo Says things like: ‘Massive east coast snow storm makes me want to walk dog by lowering him out window on a rope.’

@ConanOBrien ‘January is named for actor Jan-Michael Vincent, who was famous for exactly 31 days one winter.’

@ladygaga Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta is the act that Madonna could have been (if she had any real talent).

‘In this lifetime how will you use the power in your voice? Will you give back to the world what you receive, or are you just taking?’

Oh just shut up and sing, will you?

Irish Tweeters’ Tweeters

Some favourites among the Irish Twitter fraternity: @darraghdoyle, @patomahony @irishmammies @Jim_Sheridan

Some random spoof accounts

@Not Zuckerberg Facebook frolics

@wengerknowsbest For soccer types

@KimKierkegaard Kardashian as philosopher

@Queen_UK Royalty among spoof accounts. An absolute must.

@GusTheFox Gus the Fox digs in bins, boxes owls and hates children.

@IvanTheSeagull Smokes and swears a lot at geese.

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