Twitter as a web site news feed

I started a Twitter account for @user_lab recently, with the idea that it would create a quick, up to date news feed for the http://www.user-lab.com site. It's easy to do through http://twitter.com/badges and then you just paste it into your HTML page. It's working nicely, although I have to keep remembering ??this is primarily supposed to eventually look like a news feed so I need to remember:

  • don't make it too chatty, the User-lab site is a professional one (we hope!)
  • don't engage in conversation, which might seem a bit rude when accessed on the level of it being a Twitter account, but means @replies don't seem disjointed and confusing when viewed as a news list on our home page
  • try to limit the use of hashtags, because again, like @, # won't mean anything (or do anything like appear as hyperlinks) when seen on the User-lab site. It's only an understood?? convention within Twitter.
  • to grey back the 'date/time poster' line, because okay it's interesting, but not as interesting as the actual post. I also removed the underline. I generally don't think that?? many people are interested in, or need to click that link.??
  • use a URL shortener in posts because it means my posts can be longer. I use the same one every time, bit.ly, so that makes it appear more universal on the home page too.
  • remember the purpose i.e. to disseminate quick info about current project progress, link to interesting / useful links for potential clients / contemporaries
  • update regularly, at least once a day, to keep it fresh. That's not very frequent for a Twitter account, but it is for a site news feed. It's also easier?? because writing a 140 character 'blog' is a lot easier than thinking of several hundred words of genius, insightful comment or analysis.

There are probably plenty of other things I'm doing without realising but those are the main style points.

Finally, on the home page, because all the posts are limited to 140 characters it means they appear as very evenly sized paragraphs, very neat.

Anyway, of course, feel free to follow us on Twitter

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