Twitter working on way to recover old tweets


26 July 2012

Twitter is working on a tool that would let users export every tweet they’ve ever made on the site, the company’s chief executive, Dick Costolo, told The New York Times.

While useful, the tool would not be the first of its kind. Facebook already lets users download a ‘personal archive’ that includes a list of every message a user ever sent, a list of every friend they have, copies of any photos or videos uploaded, and much more.

Adding similar functionality to Twitter would certainly not be as useful as so much content is made up of retweets of stories from around the Web – effectively making the site a hub for news feeds and material of short-term interest.

So the idea of a person being able to see perhaps tens of thousands of his thoughts over time, all in one place, is pretty compelling. For some people it would work out to be like a virtual diary and news chronicle all in one.




Currently Twitter only gives users access to a certain number of their tweets and Costolo did not say when the company would release the personal export tool it is working on. In the meantime, if retrieving old posts is important to you, try, which backs up social networks, or CloudMagic, which is a lightning-fast way to search for things across Exchange, Twitter, Gmail, Google Apps, Chat, Docs, Calendar and Contacts.

Another thing to note is the tool Twitter is developing will only be for user’s own tweets, not for digging through Twitter’s entire trove of posts.

"It’s two different search problems," Costolo told the Times. "It’s a different way of architecting search, going through all tweets of all time. You can’t just put three engineers on it."

IDG News Service

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