Mr. Twitter Goes To Washington2:32 PM EST Thu. Apr. 15, 2010
Careful what you tweet, those 140 character or less slices of life known as Twitter posts will be around for eternity.
Or so says the U.S. Library of Congress which this week revealed it will archive every Tweet. Through a partnership with the micro-blogging phenomenon the U.S. Library of Congress now has access to each and every tweet. Twitter donated the archive.
That means every public tweet, or every tweet not flagged as private, will be made available to the Library of congress after six months. So now your tweets about your missing cat or your thoughts about American Idol contestants will be forever cataloged at the oldest federal cultural institution and the country's largest library.
According to a blog post from Twitter founder Biz Stone, more than 55 million tweets are broadcast each day by Twitter's 105 million users, pushing the total of tweets tweeted into the billions.
"It's very exciting that tweets are becoming part of history," Stone wrote. "It should be noted that there are some specifics regarding this arrangement. Only after a six-month delay can the Tweets be used for internal library use, for non-commercial research, public display by the library itself, and preservation."
Word that the Library of Congress will play host to the Twitter archive comes as Google also wants tweets to live on forever. Google said this week it will launch a new search function that presents archived Twitter content as a timeline where users can search topics and see related tweets. The feature, dubbed Google Replay, will eventually archive all of Twitter's history going back to when it launched in March 2006.
The announcements come as Twitter hosts its first ever developer conference, Chirp, where it clued developers into its roadmap, which includes a new feature called "promoted tweets." Promoted tweets is an advertising platform based on user search terms which shifts the company's focus to a revenue generator from a social media platform bent on "improving the user experience."