4,398 followers looks like a good thing, right? But Robert Loerzel’s a smart power-twitterer who knows that another number is prime: the prolific freelancer and Crain’s contributor follows 4,643. From that mighty flow, Loerzel tames a mighty firehose of newsbreaks, concert news, booze clues, and all matter of oddities and quiddities, local, literary and international. A typical posting day for Loerzel, October 22, produced eighty-five entries by the end of the workday. Personal news curation like Loerzel’s is eons removed from the days that ink-stained scribes dreamt of a Teletype machine in their basement, pounding out the pulse of the world’s news flow. A reigning rule of thumb is that you follow at least a third the number of accounts who follow you, to keep a healthy flow going, rather than just self-promoting, trolling or hate-posting (all known Twitter attributes). If you’re looking for an even wider range of sources to expand your view of the potential of Twitter, here’s a primary Twitter: find someone like Loerzel, look at their follows and followers and add whomever looks interesting to your own tally. Loerzel has more words, and images at his site, robertloerzel.com.
AUDIENCE CHOICE: @marcusgilmer, DNAInfo (tie)
Best of Chicago 2013