Twitter to show whereabouts of tweeters

Aug 20, 2009
Twitter is adding location to its globally popular microblogging service in a move that will let people see where "tweets" are coming from.

Twitter is adding location to its globally popular microblogging service in a move that will let people see where "tweets" are coming from.

"We're gearing up to launch a new feature which makes Twitter truly location-aware," Twitter co-founder Biz Stone said in a message posted Thursday at the San Francisco-based Internet firm's website.

"A new API (application programming interface) will allow developers to add latitude and longitude to any ."

Accurate "tweet-level" location data would let people switch from tracking messages based on individuals or topics to following microblogging by neighborhood or city, according to Stone.

"It's easy to imagine how this might be interesting in an event like a concert or something more dramatic like an earthquake," Stone wrote.

"There will likely be many use cases we haven't even thought of yet which is part of what makes this so exciting."

Outside who create applications for Twitter will be able to experiment with the location API prior to the feature being added to the microblogging service.

Twitter users interested in letting their whereabouts be known will need to activate the new feature, which will be "off" as a default setting. Exact location data will not be stored for extended periods, according to Twitter.

"If people do opt-in to sharing location on a tweet-by-tweet basis, compelling context will be added to each burst of information," Stone said.

Outside developers have been incorporating location into Twitter applications "for some time despite having access to only a rudimentary level" of support, according to the microblogging service.

"Most of the location-based projects we see are built using the simple, account-level location field folks can fill out as part of their profile," Stone said. "Since anything can be written in this field, it's interesting but not very dependable."

An everyday chatting tool for many, has also become a weapon for dissidents to circumvent censorship in places where freedom of speech is suppressed.

(c) 2009 AFP

Explore further: Britain's UKIP issues online rules after gaffes

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Twitter unveils new frontpage

Jul 30, 2009

Micro-blogging service Twitter has unveiled a new frontpage featuring a prominent search box in a bid to attract new users.

Twitter to try money-making methods

Mar 27, 2009

Micro-blogging sensation Twitter plans to begin dabbling this year with ways to pump cash from the fast-growing free service.

Wife of Twitter CEO 'tweets' delivery

Aug 11, 2009

The pregnant wife of Twitter chief executive Evan Williams delivered updates on the delivery of their son on Tuesday using the microblogging service co-founded by her husband.

Recommended for you

Britain's UKIP issues online rules after gaffes

2 hours ago

UK Independence Party (UKIP), the British anti-European Union party, has ordered a crackdown on the use of social media by supporters and members following a series of controversies.

Sony saga blends foreign intrigue, star wattage

2 hours ago

The hackers who hit Sony Pictures Entertainment days before Thanksgiving crippled the network, stole gigabytes of data and spilled into public view unreleased films and reams of private and sometimes embarrassing ...

Digital dilemma: How will US respond to Sony hack?

Dec 18, 2014

The detective work blaming North Korea for the Sony hacker break-in appears so far to be largely circumstantial, The Associated Press has learned. The dramatic conclusion of a Korean role is based on subtle ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

vika_Tae
not rated yet Aug 21, 2009
Someone posts about their life, and says they're going to stay with friends for a few days, any would-be burglars in the area can now snoop freely.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.