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Sep 13 2010

Is your Twitter feed working?

Construction EnquirerSometimes you only notice how much you appreciate something when it disappears from view. Since its launch in April (post), I have been a happy consumer of Construction Enquirer‘s free news service, most of which I follow through Twitter, though I also welcome the daily email newsletter digest.

However, having been driven past Basingstoke yesterday and seen the last wisps of smoke from a major construction site fire, I was suddenly keeping half an eye open for a Twitter item about the blaze. I then realised that the @ConstructionEnq twitter feed had been quiet for a few days: judging by its Twitter page, only the daily newsletter had been tweeted since 1 September.

I wasn’t sure whether this was a deliberate change of policy or a technology problem (Twitter changed its account authentication process early this month, so this may have affected the WordPress Twitter Tools plug-in that Construction Enquirer was using).

I tweeted to ask if there was a problem, but, suspecting neither Aaron Morby nor Grant Prior were routinely monitoring tweets (see Twitter update), I also switched to ‘traditional social media’ and picked up the ‘phone…. Grant confirmed, just as I’d thought, that it was probably a technology issue. So, with luck, the news tweets should be flowing again shortly.

One thing this incident has made me do is check that any automated feeds that I use, to complement my ‘Paul-powered Tweets’, are working. If you use Twitter Tools or other services that might have been affected by Twitter’s technology change, perhaps you should check them too.

Twitter update 2

The guys at Construction Enquirer have been making some good progress with Twitter since I last wrote about them in May.

  • I am now just one of over 700 people being followed by @ConstructionEnq
  • there are now 592 followers getting news tweets in their live-stream (up from 30 in four months – almost 1000% growth!)
  • output averages around ten tweets per working day (not excessive to me), including a link to the newsletter
  • But I still think Aaron and Grant could be doing a little more dialogue stuff, especially as they now have a growing community of followers. It is rare to see a ‘human’ tweet – say, a reply to an incoming tweet, or a question asked for debate (though Construction Enquirer is involved with the recently revamped tCn – the Construction network* – to develop an online community to discuss industry issues).

[* Disclosure: I have undertaken paid consultancy work for tCn.]

1 comment

4 pings

  1. Su Butcher

    Ah, what would those poor guys do without us keeping an eye on them eh?
    Something I love about twitter, it is rather difficult to fake.

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