• #OnlyOnTwitter: The 113th Congress convenes

    Friday, January 04, 2013

    Yesterday the 113th Congress was sworn in at the US Capitol. Many of the newly-elected members took to Twitter to share their pride, gratitude (and a dash of awe) to be officially taking office. If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to be sworn in to public office, these Tweets from some of the newest members offer a glimpse into the first day on the job at the Capitol.

    Rep. Eric Swalwell started his morning with a run past the U.S. Capitol, where he would later be sworn in:

    Senator Heidi Heitkamp arrived from frigid North Dakota to find a warm welcome awaiting in her new Capitol Hill office:

    South Carolina’s Tim Scott, the only African American member of the Senate, showed what his first day of work entailed:

    Incoming Virginia Senator Tim Kaine posted bilingual Tweets for the benefit of his Spanish-speaking constituents:

    Many of the new Congress members didn’t arrive in Washington alone: they brought along their families, in person or in spirit, for the historical occasion:

    In addition to welcoming to the new members, colleagues of Illinois Senator Mark Kirk shared in his emotional return to Capitol Hill following a stroke last year:
    While other returning Senators noted the historic composition of the new class:

    Also on the agenda for the first day of business was electing party leadership. The vote for Speaker of the House attracted notable attention; several representatives used Twitter to share updates and their thoughts:

    As the 113th Congress gets underway, following your representatives gives you a closer perspective every day on the goings-on in D.C., your state and district.

    Posted by Bridget Coyne (@bcoyne)
    Government, News, & Social Innovation Team
  • Celebrating 2013 in the global town square

    Tuesday, January 01, 2013

    Happy new year! Last night millions of people rang in 2013 by tweeting messages as midnight arrived in every time zone. From Tokyo to San Francisco, the spikes in Tweets per second reveal when and where people celebrated as seen in this visualization created by Twitter's @trebor:
    While the numbers tell one story, individual Tweets offer a more intimate look at the hopes, wishes and thoughts people from around the world (and space!) have for this year. Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield tweeted to earth from the International Space Station: An early riser tweeted the first sunrise of the year over Mount Fuji: Like many of us, celebrities, athletes and other notables were out in force on Twitter last night wishing everyone a new year and sharing their resolutions: Posted by Rachael Horwitz (@rachaelrad) Communications Team
  • Our year in Twitter news and notes

    Monday, December 31, 2012

    As the year ends, we wanted to look through our various communication channels to learn what news and notes have interested you most in the past 12 months.

    First up, @twitter. Here are the top 5 tweets of the year (those with the most clicks and retweets):

    1) New Twitter Profiles
    2) Tweets must still flow
    3) Twitter Mobile app updates for iPhone and Android
    4) New version of Twitter, now on for everyone
    5) Twitter now in RTL languages: Hebrew, Farsi, Arabic, Urdu
    Perhaps not surprisingly, your attention has been on a variety of features you want on your Twitter — and our intention to keep your Tweets flowing freely is clearly something you feel passionate about too.

    Beyond any specific Tweet, we’re gratified to see that @twitter followers more than doubled this year. (Last January, we had 6.86 million followers; today, at the end of December, you are 15.4 million strong.) Thank you for following along as we continue to develop and strengthen Twitter for you.

    Twitter Blog
    You’ll see some variations here from our top Tweets, and the top 5 posts (by pageview) were all published in December.

    1) Twitter photos: Put a filter on it
    2) Your Twitter archive
    3) New profiles for everyone
    4) Welcome, Pope Benedict XVI
    5) This Year on Twitter

    Interesting sidenote: Since the blog started in August 2006, eight of the most popular posts ever appeared in 2012, including these five. As for frequency, we’ve been ramping up: including this post, we’ve published 204 times in 2012. That's the most ever over a year's time.

    On our other core blogs, you responded to a wide range of news. The Ads Blog revealed most interest in our advertising partnerships (American Express in March, Pepsi in May). Twitter developers read up avidly on changes to our API, and the ever-popular Bootstrap, including version 2.0. On our Engineering Blog, technical readers were very keen on our quest for speed and the new Innovator’s Patent Agreement.

    During a 7.3 earthquake that reverberated off the coast of Japan in early December, readers there turned to our info on how to use Twitter in such an emergency, which also described Twitter’s inclusion in the government’s Lifeline program. (News of the Twitter photo filters was the other most-read post in Japanese.) In France, the photo filters release was most popular, as was the ability to see Trends in more cities. The UK had a huge year in sport, and our posts on the first 24 hours of the Summer Olympics and the dramatic Champions League match garnered the most views. Meanwhile, Portuguese Twitter users (who are mostly in Brazil) were especially keen on the new Discover features released in May.

    As always, we’re pleased to bring you news and information about Twitter that you find useful and interesting. Here’s to the year ahead on our global town square.

    Posted by Karen Wickre (@kvox)
    Editorial Director
  • Resolved: It’s time for resolutions

    The New Year is upon us, and soon many of you will share your wishes and resolutions on Twitter for the year ahead. We'll all be watching as the world rings in 2013 with Tweets from Sydney to London to LA, and everywhere in between.

    Whether you aspire to something silly or serious next year, Tweeting your #resolutions can be an effective way to account for your actions. If you want to lose weight, search on #weightloss to find inspiring accounts to follow. If you’re determined to read more books, you can find #bookclub tips. If you need other sources of inspiration, here are a few ideas to spark your resolve.

    Folk hero Woody Guthrie’s resolutions for 1942 are still worthy of consideration:
    A time-honored resolution is (always) to eat more healthy foods:
    Apparently, many of us tend to give up on our resolutions within the first month. Scientific research offers some achievable alternatives, e.g. “If an Olympic medal doesn’t seem to be in the cards, another good route might be sleep more.” So reports @sarahkliff on The Washington Post’s Wonkblog:
    Naturally, there are hardy perennials among resolutions, with something for everyone:
    And what would the eve of 2013 be without an infographic full of data about the success (or failure) of the most popular #resolutions?
    Whatever you resolve, we here at Twitter HQ wish you a safe and happy passage to the New Year ahead.

    Posted by Karen Wickre (@kvox)
    Editorial Director
  • Your Twitter archive

    Wednesday, December 19, 2012

    It’s no secret: You make Twitter what it is. And if you tweet, you may have found yourself wanting to go back in time and explore your past Tweets. Maybe you wanted to recall your reaction to the 2008 election, reminisce on what you said to your partner on your 10th anniversary, or just see your first few Tweets. We know lots of you would like to explore your Twitter past.

    Today, we’re introducing the ability to download your Twitter archive, so you’ll get all your Tweets (including Retweets) going back to the beginning. Once you have your Twitter archive, you can view your Tweets by month, or search your archive to find Tweets with certain words, phrases, hashtags or @usernames. You can even engage with your old Tweets just as you would with current ones.

    Go to Settings and scroll down to the bottom to check for the option to request your Twitter archive. If you do see it, go ahead and click the button. You’ll receive an email with instructions on how to access your archive when it’s ready for you to download.

    If you don’t see that option in Settings today, know that it’s on the way! We’re rolling out this feature slowly, starting today with a small percentage of users whose language is set to English. Over the coming weeks and months, we’ll make it available to all users around the world, for all the languages we offer. We’re really excited to bring this feature to everyone, and we appreciate your patience as we work to do so.

    This project was first built during one of our quarterly Hack Weeks. Since then, we’ve done the engineering work necessary to make it available to Twitter users. We look forward to seeing the old Tweets you uncover. As you go through all of your Tweets, share your favorites using #TwitterArchive.

    Posted by Mollie Vandor (@mollie)
    User Services Engineering Team
  • When musicians talk, #TheWorldIsListening

    Tuesday, December 18, 2012

    From @Deadmau5 collaborating with one of his Twitter followers to @theRealXtina (Christina Aguilera) taking questions in advance of her single release for #YourBody, some of the most exciting moments in music on Twitter happen when our favorite musicians talk directly to their fans. It turns out that artists have their own musical icons, too — and now you have a chance to listen in on conversations between some of the most exciting women in music, brought to you by the GRAMMYs.

    Every year, the GRAMMYs telecast is given an official name that captures the theme for the evening. Last year, it was “We Are Music”, and included a live-tweeting cast of all-star talent from myriad genres and @TwitterMusic. For the 2013 GRAMMYs, the link between Twitter and music’s biggest night is stronger than ever: the official title of the show will be #TheWorldIsListening.

    To kick off this collaboration, the GRAMMYs are bringing music fans their first #TheWorldIsListening campaign, a series of intimate Q&As between ten pairs of artists. Fans can drop in on conversations between incredible women in the recording industry, ranging from GRAMMY-award-winning music icons (many times over) like Reba McEntire to indie artists like Sharin Foo of the Raveonettes.

    The GRAMMYs will host this series of artist-to-artist Q&As exclusively on Twitter with support from our own @TwitterMusic. You can follow the conversations via each artist’s account (full schedule and list of @ handles is below), or by following @TheGrammys.

    The conversations kick off today (Dec. 18) and run throughout the week:

    12/18 11AM PST @nervomusic > @bonniemckee 
    12/18 12PM PST @Halestorm > @OfficialITM
    12/18 4PM PST @speak_true (Melissa Etheridge) > @serenaryder
    12/19 TBD @lucyhale > @bridgitmendler
    12/19 11 AM PST @theraveonettes > @matesofstate
    12/19 11 AM PST @saraevansmusic > @raelynnofficial 
    12/19 1PM PST @kelly_clarkson > @reba
    12/20 TBD @sofiofficial > @kerlimusic
    12/20 11 AM PST Alison Sudol aka @afinefrenzy > @joywilliams of The Civil Wars
    12/20 5PM PST @mirandalambert > @sherylcrow

    Posted by Tatiana Simonian (@tatiana)
    Head of Music
  • Twitter for BlackBerry 4.0 update: See all the interactions in your network

    Now BlackBerry will have Connect capabilities on Twitter. New tabs, streamlined design, and simplified navigation makes this the most enjoyable Twitter for BlackBerry app yet.

    Connect shows you who retweeted, favorited and followed you, and gathers all your mentions in one place. And now it’s simple to filter mentions and replies to see only certain interactions.

    We’ve improved access to existing and new functionality. For example, the new Discover tab encompasses Trends, “Who to follow” suggestions, and an easier way to browse categories. You will now find messages, lists, and your favorited Tweets in the Me tab.

    Download the update and enjoy.

    Posted by Martin Essl (@messl)
    Senior Mobile Partnership Program Manager

  • This week on Twitter: 17 December

    Monday, December 17, 2012

    On most Mondays, we post “This week on Twitter” to alert you to key things happening in the coming week. Whether it’s a live chat with the cast of your favorite TV show, a Q&A with a political candidate or a pro sports team Tweepstakes, keep current about can’t-miss moments on Twitter in the week ahead. - Ed. 

    Black List Q&A - Dec. 18 
    Movie buffs should flock to Twitter this week for an exclusive Twitter Q&A with Black List founder Franklin Leonard (@franklinleonard) and screenwriters from this year’s Black List.

    The Black List (@theblcklst) is Hollywood’s primary arbiter of taste in unproduced scripts, and once included the scripts for Academy Award winners like “Slumdog Millionaire” and “The King's Speech”. As the list includes the “most liked” unproduced screenplays for 2012, movie fans on Twitter can gain access to some of tinseltown's most talented writers behind-the-scenes.

    Fans can watch as the list is announced via Twitter this Monday at 9 a.m ET and can participate in the special Q&A on Tuesday at 8 a.m. ET by using the hashtag #BlackList2012.

    Posted by Rachael Horwitz (@RachaelRad)
  • Coming Soon: Nielsen Twitter TV Rating

    Today Nielsen announced an agreement with Twitter to create the “Nielsen Twitter TV Rating,” an industry-standard metric that is based entirely on Twitter data.

     As the experience of TV viewing continues to evolve, our TV partners have consistently asked for one common benchmark from which to measure the engagement of their programming. This new metric is intended to answer that request, and to act as a complement and companion to the Nielsen TV rating. 

    You can read more about the news on Nielsen’s site here. Ultimately, we have one goal for this new metric: to make watching TV with Twitter even better for you, the TV fan. I look forward to sharing more about this effort in the months to come.

    Posted by Chloe Sladden (@ChloeS)
    Head of Media
  • The Pope’s first Tweets

    Wednesday, December 12, 2012

    Nine days ago, the Vatican launched the first personal Twitter accounts for the Pope, giving Pope Benedict XVI the opportunity to tweet in English (via @Pontifex) and in seven other major languages.

    The day these accounts were launched, Pope Benedict also invited the world to send him questions about faith via #AskPontifex. He promised to respond to some of these questions nine days later. And now, with tens of thousands of questions in hand, @pontifex has answered: Today, the Pope sent his first Tweet during a live event at the Vatican attended by thousands.

    This Tweet was immediately retweeted thousands of times, and shortly afterwards @pontifex and its seven related language accounts began responding to several questions tweeted in the past week. The first question, asked by Spanish journalist @jcalderero in Madrid, asked:

    The Pope responded:

    The second question, originally in Portuguese, asked how people can remain hopeful in troubled times. His response:

    Third, from an American mother:

    The Pope answered:

    The Pope will be tweeting regularly from here on. Follow him on any of these accounts:

    Posted by Claire Díaz-Ortiz (@claire)
    Social Innovation team