You don't have to look farther than Twitter itself to find available usernames for the social media behemoth. Twitter automatically rejects requests for names that are already taken, so there's no risk of having the exact same handle as someone else. Short Twitter names can be difficult to get. With so few characters to work with in a tweet, the shorter your username, the better.

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When you sign up for Twitter, the system generates possible usernames for you. You have the option of picking one of the suggestions or entering other choices; the system tells you if the Twitter name you entered is available. Before you claim a Twitter name, do a Web search for the exact name to see what comes up. This can reduce the risk of being confused with a celebrity, criminal, business or other entity. A Twitter username is limited to 15 characters and can only contain letters, numerals and underscores. Other characters, such as symbols, hyphens and exclamation points, aren't allowed.

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