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Twitter to Become Location Aware

Readying Launch of Geolocation in API, Then Site

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Twitter just announced that it has plans to launch a feature that makes the service location-aware. They’re rolling out a new API that will allow developers to add latitude and longitude to any specific tweet.

"Folks will need to activate this new feature by choice because it will be off by default and the exact location data won’t be stored for an extended period of time," says Co-founder Biz Stone. "However, if people do opt-in to sharing location on a tweet-by-tweet basis, compelling context will be added to each burst of information."

"For example, with accurate, tweet-level location data you could switch from reading the tweets of accounts you follow to reading tweets from anyone in your neighborhood or city—whether you follow them or not," he explains. "It’s easy to imagine how this might be interesting at an event like a concert or even something more dramatic like an earthquake. There will likely be many use cases we haven’t even thought of yet which is part of what makes this so exciting."

It is worth noting that our own Twellow already has a feature called TwellowHood, that lets you find local Twitterers based on their city of residence. This can be a useful tool for connecting with people in your area, or from areas from which you are familiar.

TwellowHood

Twitter will be adding the feature to Twitter.com as well, but will release geolocation to developers first. So look for this functionality on various Twitter-apps before finding it on the site.

Twitter seems to be stepping it up in the way of usability. They also recently announced plans for retweet capabilities (see why that’s good for businesses here).

Twitter to Become Location Aware
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  • http://pittsburgh.scientology-blog.com Pittsburgh Scientology

    That’s interesting, do you have any screen shots yet of what posted tweets might look like?

    • Chris Crum

      Haven’t seen any yet.

  • http://blog.maskil.info/ Maskil

    Twitter is simply playing catch-up once again. Brightkite has had a geolocation feature from the start. http://brightkite.com/

  • MelissaM

    I hope this will be opt-in or else peeps have to start worrying about geolocation stalkers. If I’m in havin’ a pretzel in Philly, hittin’ on surfers in San Diego, or smuggling drugs into the Congo, I’d still like to decide when and with whom to share that info…


    M