Social Media and Public Health

Materials from today’s presentation for the Northwest Center for Public Health Practice.

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General Resources

Archiving Tweets

In order to meet public records requirements, you should keep an archive of tweets made on behalf of any government agency. Here are some easy ways to do that:

  • TwapperKeeper
    As long as your traffic is modest (you’re not a trending topic), TwapperKeeper is a great tool to use to archive hashtags (#) and keywords (no #). In addition, you can back up your tweets. Sign in with your Twitter account to set up an archive. Ideally, you would log in once a month and export the prior month’s tweets.
  • TweetBackup
    This service backs up your tweets; you’ll sign in with your Twitter account. Currently you can only export posts (max 3200 – limit imposed by Twitter), not your friends list. Formats: CVS | RSS | Text | HTML. For $1/month, TweetBackup will also back up images uploaded to TwitPic or YFrog.
  • TweetScan
    This service can backs up your tweets (including DMs), followers, favorites. You have to authorize the application; after it performs the back up (max 1000 tweets at a time), it is available for download for seven days. Format: TiddlyWiki
  • The Archivist
    This is a Windows desktop application (so you’ll need to be able to install software on your computer to use this tool). Use it for archiving searches (not your tweet stream). However, there is also a web version of the app. If you set up an archive on your Twitter name, you’ll also capture all @ replies directed to you. Author: Microsoft’s MIX Online team.
    Works will all major blogging services to export tweets to a blog. I keep a publicly searchable (Google does rock) archive of my tweets on a dedicated blog.
  • RowKeeper
    Track up to 500 Facebook or Twitter updates, keywords or hashtags per month for free; results populate a spreadsheet in your Google docs account. For organizations with multiple accounts or high volume, a paid model provides unlimited data, starting at $250 a month, but there are also plans starting at $5 a month.

Finding Public Health Twitter Lists

As noted in our session, I search Twitter using Google. Here are some public health lists that you might find interesting:

Twitter Tools

  • TweetStats
    The best tool for competitive analysis.
  • TwitterCounter
    Visualize follower numbers, tweets.
  • Klout
    A measurement of Twitter influence.
  • HootSuite
    Social media dashboard. Schedule tweets, track statistics, customize URLs, etc.
  • CoTweet
    Designed specifically to allow several individuals to manage one Twitter account.
  • URL shorters: (you can also use your own URL and their software), tiny.url
  • Sharing images: TwitPic, YFrog, TweetPic

Intro: Twitter In Plain English

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By Kathy E. Gill

Digital evangelist, speaker, writer, educator. Transplanted Southerner; teach newbies to ride motorcycles! @kegill

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