You may recall that earlier this year Twitter made some changes to its whitelisting practice. This effectively forced the majority of developers to work within its API limits and also nudged many of those same developers toward an official Twitter partner, Gnip, in order to work around API limits for large streams of data. The latter costs money. Potentially a lot of money.
This decision affected not-for-profit applications like TwapperKeeper adversely, potentially disrupting the practices of lots of academic researchers who relied on such services. Long story short, Amanda has been in contact with the folks at Twitter, who, I presume, don't necessarily want to stifle research or torpedo someone's dissertation.
Twitter has established an email address specifically for academic researchers looking for help with scraping and archiving tweets: firstname.lastname@example.org. Here's what Amanda's contact at Twitter had to say:
We now have a dedicated email address for researchers who have questions about how to use our API to help them get Twitter data and use it in accordance with our TOS. Feel free to direct people to email@example.com now; we'll be doing so with the phrase "If you have questions on how to use the Twitter API to gather data for your research, or what you can do with this data, email firstname.lastname@example.org."This is a nice gesture on Twitter's part. I'd like to see a site or wiki eventually where much of this info is simply posted and updated. I imagine that'd take considerably less time than responding to emails individually.
Topics we can help with include how to get all Tweets containing a keyword, how to get all Tweets from a date range, how to get all Tweets from a user, our guidelines around sharing datasets (namely, don't), and how to show Tweets in your final report.
Hopefully this will help!
Regardless, this is good news for worried academics who study Twitter.