Microblogging service


Users 'follow' contacts, celebrities, etc feed of 140-character messages. Messages can be targeted at users (e.g. @username) or tagged to simplify searching ('hashtag' - #topicname). 'Tweets' can be shared/repeated by 'retweeting' (RT). Twitter has a high compatibility with mobile devices and SMS enabling frequent updating and checking.

The technology behind Twitter is used elsewhere in 'Sister' websites such as Twitterfall (enables tweets to be displayed as a cascading, real-time feed) and other platforms (such as desktop-based).

Has a media/celebrity focus but has been used to communicate breaking news globally over very short time scales.

Science on Twitter

Exemplar science Twitter accounts include: (taken from Twitter 'suggested feeds' page)

News outlets:

BBC Science and Technology (@bbcscitech) Reuters Science News (@reuters_science) and New Scientist @newscientist)


Smithsonian (@Smithsonian), the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (@whitehouseostp) and the National Geographic Society (@natgeosociety)

Scientists in the media

Brian Cox (@profbriancox), Ben Goldacre (@bengoldacre) and Soichi Noguchi (@astro_Soichi) [Astronaut in International Space Station]

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