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How can I integrate someone else’s Twitter posts into my site?

If you’re wanting to integrate someone else’s Tweets into your website there are a couple of options, some of which are quite easy and others that will require some technical know-how. Here are 5 easy options:

  1. Embed Twitter’s official widget. This widget is intended to embed your own tweets into a site but it works just the same for someone else’s. You’d just input the user name of the person whose tweets you’d like to integrate during the setup. You can also change the colors/size/etc. to make the widget fit the look of your site. Under “Preferences” you’ll want to be sure to check “Poll for new results” so the user’s tweets will update more or less in real-time. Then, you’ll just grab the code they give you and embed it in your site.
  2. Embed SayTweet. This method is a little more creative. With SayTweet, you upload (or link to) a photo and the latest tweet is automatically overlaid onto the photo. So you could have a photo of the person whose tweets you are integrating, and a thought bubble will hover on the photo with the user’s latest tweet. This is another widget you’ll be able to embed with copy/paste code. It’s also a creative option for integrating your own tweets.
  3. Embed TwitStamp. There are a lot of other widget providers out there, but one of the flashier ones I’ve seen is TwitStamp. You’ll want one of their “latest” widgets. There are a lot of options there in several different sizes.
  4. CoverItLive also integrates tweets. You’ll just have to put the name of the user in when you’re setting up your live chat. If you’re not already using CoverItLive (it’s a live-blogging platform), it’s worth checking out anyway. This is more of a short-term solution than the other options, though.
  5. And there’s the advanced method. You can also use a more complicated version of a Twitter widget that is a more streamlined widget but requires more work on your end. This is a more difficult solution to implement. One of the better examples out there is Tweet!. We’ve also used Monitter, which can be heavily modified to fit the look of your site. In both cases, you’ll have to download this widget, modify code, etc. The direction are on the site. This is going to provide a more heavily-customized solution and allow more flexibility in the end. It will also reduce your reliability on an outside widget provider.
Online news

Study: Newspapers offer depth not found online

This isn’t a quick read, but it’s one you should probably make time for. It’s a scholarly study by Scott Maier in the j-school at Oregon, and it compares the content of five prominent Web news sites to a cross-section of U.S. daily newspapers. Here’s a sample of the results from Maier’s conclusions: “In a time of turmoil for the press, this study’s findings offer a refreshingly positive perspective for newspapers—at least from the standpoint of content. Clearly, newspapers provide a product that offers depth and breadth unmatched by their online competition. This is a selling point that has not been made strongly enough by the press. With most major stories authored by named staff, newspapers also boast a high degree of story ownership and transpar¬ency—attributes largely missing from some of the nation’s most prominent online services. In sum, newspapers have good reason to boast that they offer in-depth, independent news unrivaled even in the digital age. The findings also underscore some of the strengths of online news. Read¬ers who now get their news on the computer rather than at their doorstep are not likely to miss out on the big stories of the day. The study showed that both newspapers and online news services shared similar news judgments regarding news topics and story prominence. But reflecting the Internet’s international audience, readers online are likely to get a broader picture of what’s happening around the world than do those who exclusively read newspapers, as well as a slightly heavier dose of analysis and opinion.”