Tools that help you get more from Twitter
All of us who relish the social aspect of the Web can be thankful to the great gods of social media that a website such as Twitter came along.
The short-messaging-service knockoff has retooled the way we interact, 140 characters at a time, so that now Twitter is among the top-10 websites worldwide and has been used in a variety of ways — from college lectures to civil unrest.
But not everyone apart from newspaper headline writers believes they can express themselves in a mere 140 characters per post, or believes that words alone can convey their messages. That’s why a wide rage of tools has appeared to help Twitter users — or “tweeps” — get the most out of their Twitter messages — or “tweets.”
When paired with Twitter, these tools transform a site for blurbs into one of exposition, even journalism. Among the worthwhile tools and associated websites:
Twitpic — Allows users to upload images to their Twitter feed.
Tweetie — A Mac application, permits simultaneous access and update capability for multiple Twitter accounts.
Formulists — Helps users organize their Twitter lists by activity, number of followers, location, keywords, among other means.
Tweet Memo — The rough equivalent of a Post-it note, it lets users send themselves reminders that will pop up on their feed updates at scheduled times.
Only the Links — Sorts tweets containing Web links.
Tweriod — Analyzes followers Twitter streams, determines when they are online most often and lets users know the best times to send tweets.
Storify — An exquisite and burgeoning tool for journalists, it allows users to create narratives by knitting tweets together.
David Sheets is a sports editor at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and STLtoday.com, and president of SPJ’s St. Louis Pro chapter. Reach him by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, on Twitter at @DKSheets, or on Facebook and LinkedIn.
Defending the First Amendment and promoting open government are more crucial now than ever. Join SPJ's fight for the publics right to know either as an SPJ Supporter or a professional, student or retired journalist.