Links and Twitter

Steve Dale writes about his uneasiness with a new Twitter mashup service, Twitchboard, which automates the posting of content from Twitter to other social web services. At the moment, all it does is links: if you post a URL to Twitter it also gets pinged to your Delicious account.

I may be in the minority here but I feel slightly troubled by apps such as Twitchboard that want to think for me. I’m perfectly happy to create my own bookmarks in Delicious, which are reasonably well organised and categorised, or to click on Stumble! to add a link to a particularly interesting article I’ve read to my Stumble!  These are conscious decisions I’ve made to provide the ’semantic glue’ for my personalised social web. I tend to Tweet about fairly trivial stuff and will occasionally link to an article or picture that I’ve found particularly amusing. I don’t necessarily want to store these links for prosperity, or worse, create my own personal tag cloud around a random stream consciousness.

I can see some of the value, just in terms of time saving, for cross posting links to Delicious from Twitter. But I think Steve is right in this case – having Twitchboard perform this service would make you think twice about what you post to Twitter, and that’s just no fun. Presumably you also still have to go into Delicious to add tags and stuff (which is where most of the benefit lies) – so it isn’t that much of a time saver after all.

I mentioned in a comment on Steve’s post that actually doing this in reverse makes more sense: links I save in Delicious get automatically shared on Twitter. This is fairly easy to get set up, simply by using the RSS feed from my Delicious account and Twitterfeed to parse each link I share into Twitter.

It will be interesting to see how this works…

3 thoughts on “Links and Twitter”

  1. Hi Dave,

    I created TwitchBoard, let me add one clarification. I certainly agree that only some users would want their links auto-posted to Del.ico.us; it's a personal choice based on how one uses the social web. To your comment about still needing to go to Del.ico.us to add tags, etc., I've tried to make this as easy as possible. By default, any links you tweet will get saved to Del.ico.us, with the content of your tweet as the description field, and any @replies or #hashtags turned into actual Del.ico.us tags. In addition, links are tagged "twitchboard", so that you can easily explore all of your links which specificially were posted via Twitter.

    1. Hi there – that certainly sounds like a great service you've developed. As you say, it will work for some more than others! My issue is that I post more links to twitter than delicious and so for me doing it the other way round works best.

      Good luck with the site though!

  2. I like the idea – although you say it doesn't save time as you have to go in and tag them anyway, I often post something quickly on Twitter but don't have time to sit and enter the info onto delicious. If they're automatically there, when I do have 5 minutes spare i can pop on and quickly tag & edit everything.

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