You Can’t Tweet With Us: How to Create a Private Twitter Circle

With Circles, Twitter takes a page from Instagram’s Close Friends feature (not to mention Google+) to allow you to tweet to a select group of followers. As Twitter describes it: “Some Tweets are for everyone & others are just for people you’ve picked.” Here’s how to circle up on Twitter.


How Do I Create a Twitter Circle?

create a twitter circle

Start by composing a tweet. If Circle has rolled out to your account, you’ll see a default Everyone button next to your profile icon, which means your tweets are sent out to all your followers. To change that, tap Everyone, which opens a Choose audience menu. Tap the Edit button next to the Twitter Circle option and open the Recommended tab in the new window.

You can then look through a list of people you follow or use the search bar to find them directly. When you find someone you want added to your Circle, hit the Add button next to their name. Anyone you add will then be included under the Twitter Circle tab. You can add up to 150 people.

Unlike public Twitter lists, Twitter Circles are private. Members are not notified when they are added or removed from your Circle. If your tweets are protected, no one can see interactions with your Circle tweets, even if they are in your Twitter Circle.


How Do I Send a Tweet to My Circle?

circle tweet

Tap the Everyone button and choose Twitter Circle. Then compose and send your tweet out like normal. You can also retweet something to your Circle if you click the Retweet button, select Quote Retweet, and change the tweet to Twitter Circle.

Regular retweets and replies to tweets from outside your Circle cannot be sent to your Twitter Circle. You will know when a tweet has been sent to your Circle based on the green notification displayed under it.

When you choose to send a tweet to your Circle, only members of that group can see the tweet and interact with it. If someone interacts with a Twitter Circle tweet, only other members of your Circle can see the interaction. Members of your Circle cannot retweet your Circle tweets to their followers or their own Circle.


How Do I Edit My Circle?

public a circle tweet

Once you create your Twitter Circle, you can edit it from the tweet box by choosing Everyone and hitting the Edit button next to Twitter Circle. From the Twitter Circle tab, select Remove for any user you wish to expel. You can also select the green notification under a Circle tweet and choose Edit Twitter Circle to change who remains in the group.

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Twitter Circle vs. Protected Tweets

protected tweets option

You probably know by now that you can protect your tweets so that only your followers can see and interact with them. Do this under More > Settings and privacy > Privacy and safety > Audience and tagging and enable Protect your Tweets.

So why use Twitter Circle over this more secure method? For years, turning your account private has been the only option available for those who don’t want everyone to see their tweets, but that may be too powerful a solution for some.

Twitter Circle allows you to create a smaller group of followers who can see specific tweets without you having to lock your account down completely. You can then choose when to tweet out to the world or just your Circle.

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