Twitter is a massive network consisting of a ton of infrastructure, a lot of code no one ever sees, and millions of people. Nothing in the history of mankind has reached such a scale and runs flawlessly. If you’ve never encountered a problem with Twitter, consider yourself lucky; the thousands of employees they keep on payroll are doing their jobs well enough that you never have to see the underside of functionality.
For the rest of us, though, something has come up. There are all sorts of issues, from apps that won’t install or code that won’t run to settings that don’t work right, login issues, hackings, and a whole lot more. When an issue comes up, you have three options. You can:
- Wait for the issue to resolve itself.
- Search the internet for a solution to the problem.
- Contact Twitter support.
Option 1 isn’t very good. Some issues never resolve themselves on their own, and even if they do, you never know how long it will take. You have no way of knowing if the problem is an issue with your computer, your account, your internet connection, or Twitter itself. You simply have to wait, and that’s not proactive. Plus, depending on the problem at hand, it could get worse as time goes on. A hacker taking control of your account can deal increasingly more damage the longer they have access. Even just the inability to log in properly can result in lost business and angered customers.
Option 2 is better, because at least it’s proactive. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to find someone else who has experienced your problem, and who has an existing support thread on a site like Stack Exchange, MajorGeeks, or another support board. Ideally, there will be a commonly accepted, easy to implement solution that works, and you can go on with your life.
All too often, though, this situation leads to frustration. Maybe the issue is a rare one, and you find numerous people asking for help to solve it, but no actual answers on what solution might work. Maybe the issue is uncommon but persistent, coming back every six months or so. You find people with the same issue from 2011, but the solutions posted don’t work any more, or the options involved have been moved. Maybe the issue is a new and common issue, but the solutions posted don’t work for you, and no one reads enough to know you already tried them and need something different.
That leaves option 3. Contacting Twitter themselves will help you determine whether the issue is on your end or theirs. If it’s on their end, you will be able to work with them to get it resolved, or at least know that someone has been notified and that they are working to resolve it on their end. The trouble with this method is that it’s almost equally as frustrating as option 2. Some support methods are swamped with users clamoring for attention and never seem to respond. Others send out form responses and never seem to acknowledge specific problems. Still others refer to help documents that should help, but don’t, leaving you in the lurch. Only rarely will you get a good response.
That’s why I put together this post. I initially started researching to find the best way to contact Twitter via email, but I realized something; it’s inefficient and rarely helpful. I decide to expand my scope to all forms of Twitter contact. If one doesn’t work, try the next, and the next, and the next. Sooner or later you’ll get an acknowledgement and the help you need.
Before you go exploring support, there’s one very important thing you need to know: Twitter can be petty. You know how sometimes a person in position of authority will de-prioritize someone’s problem because they’re pestering or annoying about it? Twitter does the same thing.
What this means is that Twitter replies to a support ticket sent through any of their systems in the order it was received. The thing is, they sort by sender. If you send a support message on Monday, and then again on Tuesday, and then again on Wednesday, they will ignore the tickets sent on Monday and Tuesday. Anyone else who sent a ticket before your Wednesday ticket will take priority, unless they too sent a second ticket after you.
If you send a support ticket of any sort, send one and only one. Otherwise you’re just delaying the chances of getting a valid response.
Additionally, Twitter’s auto-responder messages are very important. Here’s what they do. They check your support message for certain keywords and send you relevant support pages and forms. They assume that those will work to solve your issue. If they do not, don’t submit another ticket! You will be put at the end of the line and treated as a new communication. Instead, reply to the email you received. This is the only way to move past the auto-response stage of support.
Twitter doesn’t really have a very good email support network. For all that we recommend that businesses use Twitter for customer support, Twitter themselves seems to have dropped the ball on this measure. More on that in a bit, though.
You would think that Twitter would have an email for customer support, but you’d think wrong. Well, that’s not strictly true. They do have a support email account, but it’s very unreliable. GetHuman, a site dedicated to finding the most efficient methods of reaching someone with authority within any business, has no listed email for Twitter support. There are a few email addresses I’ve found, for various purposes, but they aren’t always reliable.
The first email address on the list is firstname.lastname@example.org. This is, in fact, a general support email. It’s also incredibly unreliable. A lot of the time, when you send it a message, it will simply disappear. You won’t hear back at all. If you do hear back, chances are pretty good all you’ll get is a form letter based on certain keywords in your message. This might point you at a common solution to a problem you’re not having, or a link to a help center page that may or may not be useful or relevant to the situation.
Twitter uses the JIRA service desk system for their email support, a fact I discovered when looking them up. The company behind JIRA brags that Twitter dropped their support from 95% via email to only 15%. Unfortunately, they don’t seem to have recognized the quality issues this brought up. Sure, a lot of support is handled by forms and by Twitter accounts, but email should remain a viable option. The fact is, it didn’t, and that’s a shame.
The second email address I’ve found is email@example.com. This address is not for support, though, it’s specifically used when approaching Twitter about some form of partnership. Chances are if you’re not a Fortune 500 company, you aren’t going to get the time of day from Twitter through this address. At best, you’ll be told to use a different support channel.
The third email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. This email address is, reasonably enough, meant for law enforcement to contact Twitter with important and confidential case issues. If you’re not a member of law enforcement working on a case that involves Twitter, don’t use this email. At best you’ll be ignored; at worse, you can find yourself with an obstruction of justice charge for taking up the time of the team behind this address.
This is, to Twitter, the second-best means of contacting them, after their network of forms. I’ll go over those next. For now, though, if the forms don’t work for you, if you can’t log in, or if they don’t cover your issues, you can use a direct message or tweet to one of these accounts in order to try to get more direct support.
Note here that I say try. That’s because there are issues with these methods just like there are issues with email. In this case it’s one of volume. Twitter may have cut out 80% of their email support, but they really just pushed it to other contact methods, like these accounts. They have millions of followers, so the chances of your support message being noticed, read, and acted upon are pretty slim. Still, it’s worth giving a shot.
The first account is the dedicated support account. You can find it at @support, or https://twitter.com/support. They tweet tips and tricks and they handle some support, but again, it’s not necessarily all that responsive. They have 4.5 million followers and every message they tweet gets dozens of replies with support requests, often completely unrelated. I can only imagine how bad their direct message inbox would be if it were open.
The second account is even worse; it’s the general Twitter account. You can find it at @twitter or https://twitter.com/twitter. It has almost 50 million followers and is even harder to get a response out of. Their tweets are often much more off topic than @support, too.
The third account is @verified, which you can find by clicking https://twitter.com/verified. It’s an official Twitter account meant to be used specifically for the verification system. It doesn’t tweet, it doesn’t respond, and it only sends out direct messages to people who are earning verification. Maybe they will help forward a support message on, or maybe not; I don’t rightly know.
The third and highest priority method of contact, as far as Twitter is concerned, is their pile of support forms. These filter you by issue and take you to specific forms that give you some preliminary assistance, and allow you to submit a support ticket if the basic solutions don’t work. You can find the basic entry portal here. The categories are:
- Account Access. This section covers issues with logging in, deactivated accounts, hacked accounts, account suspensions, and account restorations.
- Features & Settings. This section covers issues with news, moments, notifications, emails, DMs, photos and videos, search, tweets and timelines, follows/followers, your profile, and the side services Tweetdeck and Vine.
- Violation Reporting. This section covers support for being impersonated, having trademarks violated, counterfeit goods, copyright violations, harassment, privacy issues, issues with private information, reporting spam, reporting bad ads, and reporting people who are posting about self-harm.
- Purchases & Offers. This section covers, fittingly enough, issues with purchases and with offers.
Each sub-section is a link. Clicking on the link takes you to a sub-page that will help you with that problem, generally by giving you more specific options. For example, if I were to go report issues with notifications, I would click the notifications link in the Features section. This brings me to a page with three links. I can report a problem, send feedback, or search the help center.
Clicking to report a problem takes me to a form where I can specify the type of notification – Push, SMS, Email, or Web – the location of where I experience the issue, the description, and means of contacting me. Filling out that form submits a support ticket.
This is the method of getting support that Twitter obviously would prefer people use, because it’s passive and requires no attention from their staff. It’s a database of issues and solutions, which you can search. You can specifically use the help search up at the top of this page, or you can browse through categories.
- Using Twitter. This section includes answers to frequent questions, mostly aimed at beginners. These are questions like “should I protect my tweets” and “what is a hashtag?” Like I said; super basic stuff.
- My Account. This section includes answers to other common questions, like “how do I protect my tweets” and “how can my friends find me?” Again, these tend to be basic questions, just more about using your account than using the site in general.
- Fix a Problem. This section has issues like “I can’t log in!” and “Can I reactivate my account?” In general, these lead to support pages with a bunch of detailed information, which leads to various methods for contacting support, the rules that led to the issues you’re having, and what to do if you fall outside the rules. These are often where you will find links to the forms page.
- Policies and Reporting. This section has more basic questions and answers covering subjects like “where can I read more about the Twitter rules” and “how can I report violations?”
In general, the help section is valuable if your problem is a common one, but it doesn’t help at all with edge cases or when the usual solutions don’t work. You will have to move on to other forms of support in those cases.
When All Else Fails
There are two other methods you could use to contact Twitter if all else has failed. One of them is quick and one of them is long, and neither is going to help you if support already won’t.
The first is the mailing address. You can send something to Twitter, Inc. at 795 Folsom St. Suite 600, San Francisco CA 94107. I don’t know why you would, though. I can’t imagine they’ll be able to help you.
The second is their support phone number. At last report, this is 415-222-9670. According to GetHuman, this typically results in a wait time of around 18 minutes. There are other numbers listed, but this is the current most highly recommended option.
If even a phone call fails you, I don’t know what to tell you. There’s nothing to be done. You’re just going to have to go back to the beginning and try option 2 or option 1. It’s less than ideal, for sure, but if support has done nothing, there’s nothing you can do about it.