How to backup and search all the planners' tweets using Google Reader


First, why would would you want to do that? Probably because you're looking to retrieve/ retrace a Twitter conversation you were part of (or one you overhead) from a while ago. Or because you're interested in unearthing other planners' thoughts on some past event of note, say, the Tropicana redesign fiasco. Or probably to search for all '@' replies to you from folks in the plannersphere.

The thing is, Twitter Search has a tunnel vision of just over a week and half. And anything over that is just as out of reach as your own imagination and memory is within reach.

But after reading a recent post on ReadWriteWeb detailing a technique to make deep Twitter search possible, I set about to put together something that works in the same way but restricts its results to only the planners' tweets. (The original technique shows how to search through tweets from all your Twitter followers.)
You'll need (a) Google Reader and (b) an OPML/XML file of the RSS feeds of the twitter accounts of all the planners.

The former is freely available - and the latter, I have already created for you from this list of Account Planners on Twitter. You can download it here: Planners Tweets ver 1.01.

It's pretty simple and straightforward after that. Go to the 'Settings>Import/Export' tab within Google Reader. Import the above OPML/XML file by selecting it in the 'browse' window. Google Reader will import all the feeds and save them in a folder named 'Planners Tweets.'

Now, all you have to do is use the Google Reader search option to search for keywords of interest (Be sure to select the 'Planners Tweets' folder in the drop down menu). Technically, you may be able to retrieve tweets from as far back as 2 years ago. But sometimes the results may show omissions - so don't make any wagers based on it :)

Two issues to consider before you actually set up the above. The OPML file consists of RSS feeds of 250+ planners - importing them will continuously update your Google Reader with any new tweets from ALL of them. The 'mark all as read' option may come in handy when you are overwhlemed but be prepared to be assaulted with news of '1000+ ' unread items every time you log in. Two, undoing the above experiment (if that's all you wanted it to be) will involve ticking 250+ check boxes before pressing 'Unsubscribe' (there are a few workarounds though) - not a back-breaking task but tedious nonetheless.

A way around both the above problems is to use an alternative and non-regular Google account to set up the rig - something that I am currently doing.

Please note: I am constantly updating the Account Planners on Twitter list. From now on, I will also upload the updated OPML file to this post at regular intervals. If you're a planner who tweets and isn't featured on the list (or knows others) , please do leave a comment below and I shall add you to the list (and subsequently to the OPML file.)

Finally, if you are interested in searching the conversation in the plannersphere - all the planning blogs, ie. - do check out the Plannersphere Search Engine.

[Original pic by Thomas Hawk]

7 comments:

Paula Villela said...

hi,
could you add me to the list?
www.twitter.com/pavillela
thanks

Shade Andréa said...

Hi, nice list!

Could you add my name ?
My name is Shade Andrea Cavalcante.
@shade_andrea

and i'm planner in Salvador-BA (brazil)

more info:
www.meadiciona.com/shadeandrea

Invisible Ink Digital said...

Hi there

I'm Tom Eldridge and I'm a Snr Digital Planner for G2

my twitter handle is http://twitter.com/invisibldigitl

Justin D. said...

please add me to the list.

@justinkyledavis

Name: Justin Davis and I'm a planner based in Chicago, IL

bripennie said...

Hi there! I'd like to be added to the list.

@BriPennie

Thanks!

Bri Pennie
Senior Account Planner
Moxie Interactive - Atlanta, GA

digitalizer said...

Great idea + nice job :)

Would be honored to be included :
@digitalizer

Txs :)

Frédéric-Gérard Leveque
Head of digital planning
Leo Burnett France

Molly said...

Please add me to the list. Freelance planner in NYC @missmolls thanks!

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