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I came across a paper from a tweet by a researcher (in the field of computer science, specifically interpretable AI or Explainable AI). I had a query in that field, to answer which I could not find sufficient information online. So I was wondering if it would be a good idea to directly tweet the query to that researcher. But I was wondering, if that would be a good practice of social media interaction and tried to find other alternatives which could be easily deemed as acceptable. Alas, now I have lost track of the paper as well as the researcher.

So, I thought of posting the following question here for future:

Is it a good practice to tweet a query directly to the researcher on whose research work you have the mentioned query?

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    I don't use twitter, but isn't the point of twitter putting things out there, so that other can comment on it? What could possibly go wrong if you reply? Jul 16, 2023 at 16:21
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    @XanderHenderson : In hindsight , I could have replied , but was wondering if tweeting directly would be discourteous or something that is not a standard behavior in academia.
    – Amor Rei
    Jul 16, 2023 at 16:45

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If twitter is your only source of contact then use it, but a more professional way would be preferable. I think this would be the same for other social media, but my current opinion of Twitter for anything is pretty low.

One problem with any social media, including this one, is that if you want to go "offline" you need to somehow provide contact information and you risk that becoming public resulting in a spam-a-lot situation.

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  • Thank you , I did send an email to the researcher and got a reply from her as well. :)
    – Amor Rei
    Jul 20, 2023 at 18:16
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If you are worried about professionalism, you can try privately messaging the researcher to ask for their professional contacts. In my opinion, Twitter's 140 characters limit does not lend itself very well to discussion, especially academic discussion.

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    Tweet character limit in English is 280, in CJK (Chinese, Japanese and Korean) is 140. Please see this page.
    – Nobody
    Jul 17, 2023 at 8:29
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    @Nobody also depends on whether the account is verified Jul 17, 2023 at 14:19
  • @Jeff Do : Thank you , I did so and it worked well.
    – Amor Rei
    Jul 20, 2023 at 18:17
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Is it a good practice to tweet a query directly to the researcher on whose research work you have the mentioned query ?

In most cases, no problem. That's how Twitter works. When someone posts a tweet, they can restrict who may reply to it. So if they haven't done so, then you can go ahead and reply to it.

Two obvious caveats:

  • in some rare cases, it can be preferable to share the feedback privately.
  • tweets have limitations such as a rather low character max length.

So tweets are fine but think about whether public disclosure is ok and whether tweet limitations are an issue.

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    I see, I will act on this next time :)
    – Amor Rei
    Jul 20, 2023 at 18:16

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