Auto ReTweeting: Removing “Social” from Social Media

July 17th, 2009 |


Jeff Louis is a strategic media planner, brand project manager, blogger, and aspiring writer. He's intrigued by innovation overcoming adversity, survival of the fittest brand, history, reading, and similar fun stuff. He writes for sites and is the Public Relations and Advertising writer for the Chicago Examiner.

Those of you using Twitter are no doubt familiar with the numerous applications that can added to your Twitter account. In fact, the applications are too numerous to mention without adding an explanation as to their purpose. One of the nicest features that Twitter incorporates is retweeting (RT), or forwarding tweets that you find valuable to your followers.  For instance, when the Iran riots took place, a Twitter user in Iran would send out a tweet to his or her followers, updating them on what was happening within the country. These followers then retweeted the information to their followers, and so on. Look at it like it’s a giant game of tag.

Twitter is used to share links, or websites, with other users. Link sharing lies at the heart of Twitter and is one of the most-used Twitter functions; it enables users, to transmit relevant content quickly. However, according to Mashable, some people just don’t retweet, or simply do no have the time (that’s hard to fathom).

But, to those experiencing problems of this nature can thank their lucky stars for YoTwits!

YoTwits is a  service that enables users to add feeds to their Twitter stream. The automatic retweeting function, based on a user name or keyword, would resend all tweets received with the user name or keyword in the text. Automatically. Perhaps you follow Perez Hilton. You could set up YoTwits to automatically retweet every message recevied with his name on it. Likewise, setting up “” as a keyword would retweet every message that you received with “” in the text.

Although it looks good on paper, there’s a huge problem with the service: it removes “social” from social media. Why even join Twitter if you have a service retweet everything that’s sent to you. There is only one reason that YoTwits exists and that is to provide spammers and scammers with a tool to send more messages more often.

My advice? “Just Say NO to YoTwits.”

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Jeff Louis
  • Scott Wright

    Ironically, the trackbacked comments on this article seem to cause a stream of duplicate comments that makes each one a minimal value add in this context.

    That said, I agree 100% that automating retweets based on filtering or source rules does dilute the social value of the concept.

    Nice observation!

    – Scott Wright
    The Streetwise Security Coach

  • Pingback: The power of a retweet « The Seldom Seen Kid()

  • Emerson Matson

    Interesting post, but have you checked out a new and fresh way to automate it, called Robotir? It's sprouting up and it's very fresh and it really combines efficiency and simplicity.