Twitter debuted a white pages online directory to help users leaf through profiles like in a phone book. While it sounds like an interesting and useful concept, the execution has proven bizarre, and worse: useless.
Profiles are neatly arranged at around 100 per page in the online directory quietly launched this week, but finding specific user accounts can be quite the chore. Profiles are listed by first name rather than by Twitter handle, which is bad enough. Finding them is tough, especially for popular names, requiring users to sift through dozens of worthless pages to find what they’re looking for.
An example, via Mashable: Justin Bieber is under “JustBooks.in – jzzzzzzzzz” requiring a Twitter user to search through pages of Justin Bieber profiles to find the actual singer. Celebrity names, like that of the Biebs, are popular user names on Twitter, and the fact that Twitter doesn’t require you to use your real name on a profile only compounds the difficulty.
The idea was to make tweets and profiles more search engine friendly, making the user directory more of an SEO aide rather than a straight and useful in-house application for Twitter users.
What do you think of Twitter’s online directory? Useful, or useless? Should it be tweaked to be a bit more helpful for Twitter users within the site? Sound off!