Twitter Commands, Abbreviations, and Special Characters

You may be used to using Twitter to answer the question "What are you doing?", but do you really know your way around Twitter? Knowing some special characters and commands can quickly turn you into a power-Twitterer.


Within your tweets, certain characters mean and can do certain things. Put these to good use:

  • @username: Indicates a tweet to a specific person. That tweet will appear in their "replies" tab.
  • #word: Turns the word into a linked tag. Click the link and Twitter will find a bunch of other tweets with the same tag.
  • D username: Sends a private message to a person's device, the equivalent of texting someone's phone through Twitter.
  • NUDGE username: Send someone a reminder to update their Twitter status.
  • RT: "Re-Tweet." If you find a tweet you like and want to forward it on, Twitter etiquette says that you should start the post with RT, followed by @ and the username of the original Twitterer (giving credit where credit is due).


You can also type certain commands in the Twitter text box (not the search box) of from your mobile device to access some of Twitter's other features:

  • FAV username: Marks a person's last tweet as a favorite.
  • GET username: Retrieves the last tweet from a person.
  • INVITE phone number: Sends an SMS invitation to a friend's phone number. Since Twitter is global, make sure you use the full ten-digit number.
  • STATS: Tells you how many followers you have, how many Twitterers you're following, and your bio information.
  • WHOIS username: Retrieves the profile information for any public Twitter user.