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« About those Twitter Numbers | Main | Strings are not Meanings: Part 4 »

April 22, 2009


Nigel Legg

This is not always true. Many people add to posts when they retweet; personally, I edit the tweet to make sure that there is space for me to add a (admittedly short) comment at the end. I believe that retweeting without commenting is lazy.


You could use one of the url shortening services and stick the url of the tweet you're replying to at the end of your tweet.


Actually there is structure! The 'in reply to Zephoria' link below the Tweet references the original tweet. I'm working on mapping cascades, and I'm using the explicit information, plus implied links (eg A tweets a link, then B tweets it a little while afterwards with no acknowledgement but they're following A, assume they found it through them).


Click on the words "in reply to zephoria" in your tweet. This is a link to her tweet.

Paul M. Banas

Good point about cascades. Is the implication then that compiling a viral map on a particular topic will always be limited? We can understand the rise in volume, but not the person to person connections that made it happen in the first place?

Seth Grimes

Certain twitter interfaces such as TweetDeck do NOT provide an "in reply to" link. When your interlocutor is using one of those interfaces, the conversation thread is broken. It's a pain.

Ben Godfrey

Twitter searches can be retrieved as Atom feeds, which are XML. E.g.

Also, there is indeed structure in tweets. If you request tweets which are replies through the API, you'll get the ID of the original tweet.

Huayin Wang

the information is indeed available through twitter API. However, it is not available in all API calls. For example, it is NOT available for twitter search API results, but is available for user_timeline results. Here's an example:

'created_at': 'Mon Mar 16 14:34:59 +0000 2009',
'favorited': False,
'id': 1336495533,
'in_reply_to_screen_name': 'clickequations',
'in_reply_to_status_id': 1336458839,
'in_reply_to_user_id': 15503408,
'source': 'web',
'text': '@clickequations I am waiting - nervously ... what random number generation algorithm are you using?',
'truncated': False,
'user': {'created_at': 'Sun Jul 27 03:28:26 +0000 2008',

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