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So I just got out of a meeting between IT, the Library Archivist, and the Journalism Faculty of the University where I work. One of the things that came up is with the new media form our campus newspaper will be taking one of the things they'll be doing is Twittering. Since this is official publication should be archived.

Does anybody know of a tool that will archive all the tweets from an account, and the direct messages and @replies to that account?

It is possible we will decide this is beyond the scope of archiving, but for now I get to figure this out.

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    I know that it's a serious thing and I understand why they want it, but the idea of archiving 'tweets' has me giggling like an idiot. – Evan Anderson Jun 24 '09 at 22:03
  • Evan, I am so totally with you. I did threaten in the meeting to twitter that I needed a way to archive tweets. My boss looked confused. The journalism guys figured they had an ally. – Laura Thomas Jun 25 '09 at 2:30
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You might find this link to be helpful: Archiving Twitter data with Python

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Actually I'd use Laconica if you want control over what is microblogged. A live implementation can be seen on identi.ca.

Actually just a clone of twitter, but at least you are in control.

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One option would be to use the search API and subscribe to an ATOM feed and just archive that. here is an example query you can use for searching for the term "library".

Then here is an example using the user timeline service to get all of the posts on a specific user.

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Search for 'tweetbackup' and you'll find a site offering that service. (Can't post links yet or I'd do that. :) )

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I agree with Server Horror. One great way to do this is to set up a Laconica server, and use it to push out to your Twitter account. Your statuses will be archived forever, on your servers, and you can extract them in a number of ways.

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Simon Willison recently posted a nice little Python script to archive tweets: See http://github.com/simonw/mytweets/tree/master

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