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What open source Twitter / Facebook alternatives exist for use in the workplace?

I see some pages for things like EchoWaves, but I am looking for a list of options/thoughts.

Preferably Ruby based.

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what problem does "twitter" or its clone solve for you and your colleagues? –  akira Jul 16 '10 at 8:21
It would provide a "passive" 2-way communication mechanism. People across the company can raise/discuss internal/related issues in a less direct/"in your face" mechanism than email –  Chris Kimpton Jul 16 '10 at 8:31
Salesforce.com added a twitter like feature called chatter to their sales platform, but it is not open source. It does show that there is interest for micro-blogging inside of a company. zdnet.com/photos/salesforcecoms-chatter-a-walkthrough/437137 –  Greg Bray Jul 16 '10 at 20:03

6 Answers 6

up vote 17 down vote accepted

If you want to install your own Twitter alternative I would take a look at StatusNet. That is the "open source microblogging platform" which among other things powers identi.ca.

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You could cover most your requirements between XMPP (Jabber), IRC, a "blog," mailing lists, and a wiki.

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Using chat rooms can actually do wonders to "passively" keep people in formed. Where I work we have an internal IRC server, and at least a lot of the Sysadmin work i coordinated in designated IRC channels. Even if you are just talking to a single other person, you still do it in the channel, giving others the chance to get a feel for what is happening. –  andol Jul 18 '10 at 14:23

You could just look for an application that posts status updates to all of your profiles at once, chances are that won't be blocked. I know they exist, but no names come to mind right away. I'll comment when they do

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If by open source, you mean that you can download and modify the source code.

Confluence has Twitter-functionality on the personal wiki where you can update your status and follow other peoples' status.


It's not based on Ruby, but runs on a Java application server (Tomcat) with a database back end (Recommended is PostgreSQL).

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For Facebook style functionality, Elgg is pretty much drop-in and go. Drupal can be built into a pretty decent community-oriented site as well (there's a fair-to-middling book on the topic), but that would require a fair amount of Drupal familiarity to pull off.

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Yammer could fill the need, though I don't believe you can install it locally. https://www.yammer.com/

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LOL, it would seem ideal, and a few days ago our internal news site said that another part of our group was using Yammer and suggested we do too.. 2 days later it got "blocked", as not endorsed by "the board" :( –  Chris Kimpton Jul 16 '10 at 9:52

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