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New FriendFeed feature gives my in-box a headache

What happens when aggregator FriendFeed lets members import their Twitter contacts? Lots and lots and lots of e-mail notifications.

Social-network aggregator FriendFeed announced Tuesday that it's built in a Twitter friend importer, and my e-mail in-box was sort of thrown into shock.

See, here's the thing: I have a FriendFeed account, but I don't really use it; not enough of my friends do, and I've never found aggregators to really fit my social-networking habits in general. I'm a big Twitter user, however. So when FriendFeed instituted its Twitter contact import feature, I was flooded with dozens of subscription requests from people I'd never heard of. Before I was clued into the new tool, I wondered if there was a spammer problem or something; I can only imagine what it must have been like for really popular Twitter users with tens of thousands of followers.

The thing about having a Twitter friend importer is that following people on Twitter doesn't have the same kind of tie that comes from being Facebook friends (in which both members have to reciprocate) or being listed in someone's e-mail address book (which implies active communication). On the other hand, if you're both a Twitter user and a FriendFeed user, you probably will want to know what the people you follow on Twitter are up to on FriendFeed, so a contact importer makes sense in some cases.

Wednesday I went into my FriendFeed account settings and turned off e-mail notifications. Sorry, guys, but I needed some quiet. And if I want to find my friends on FriendFeed, I'm willing to dig in and look around for them.