Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Archiving Favorite Tweets

I’ve long wanted a way to archive my favorite tweets to make them easily browsable and searchable. (As with tweets, Twitter stores the old favorites but does not make them readily available.) I have been using using Tweet Nest to archive my tweets, but it does not archive favorite tweets from other users.

There are a bunch of posts about this, but I have yet to find a good way to import old favorite tweets. For example, Twitterscribe only imported the most recent favorites and did not make them available on the Web, only for download. Twitter Archiving Google Spreadsheet wanted access to my whole Google Drive, and the output is, well, a spreadsheet.

There is, however, an easy way to archive favorites going forward. You can create an IFTTT recipe with a Twitter or App.net trigger and a Pinboard action. Now my Twitter favorites and starred App.net posts get archived in Pinboard.

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4 Comments

This won't work for App.net, but Pinboard's built-in twitter archiving includes favorites. It can be enabled from the Twitter tab in Pinboard settings. Once it gets going a tweets tab appears on your user page when logged in.

@Matt I did not try Pinboard’s built-in Twitter archiving, so I may have this wrong, but I initially rejected it because it sounded like it only archived links from tweets, not the tweets themselves.

The archival feature is not mentioned on the settings page, but that connection does provide a searchable archive of the tweets as well. You can turn off the link importing options altogether and use it solely for archiving (this is how I use it). There are some mentions of this capability on the Pinboard tour page and blog.

I don't know if this is still true, but at the time I set this up Pinboard also used the Twitter API to pull in as much existing data as the API allowed, so it was able to import many of my existing favorites too.

@Matt You’re right. This seems to work very well. However, it looks like the IFTTT items are still useful because they can be searched by tag, whereas Pinboard doesn’t have a sophisticated search for tweets.

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