We'll see | Matt Zimmerman

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Micro-blogging maze

I’ve only been micro-blogging for about a month now, and already, it’s gotten complicated.


Diagram of my micro-blogging world

  • I have five views of the micro-blogging world: identi.ca (web), Twitter (web), Gwibber (client), Twidroid (client), Facebook (web)
  • I use two different micro-blogging services, identi.ca (which the free software community seems to prefer) and Twitter (which everyone else seems to prefer).  Many people seem to be on both.  Some of them relay their updates from one or the other to Facebook, some don’t.
  • Most of the time, I watch identi.ca, but I occasionally need to check the other places or I miss something.
  • identi.ca can relay my updates to Twitter and Facebook, but @replies don’t come back.  People on Twitter can hear me, but I don’t often hear them until much later (when I check Twitter)
  • Twidroid can send and receive both identi.ca and Twitter messages, but can only connect to one of them at a time (dashed lines).
  • Gwibber talks to everything every way, but crashes a lot
  • identi.ca uses #hashtags and !groups, and I never know which is right.  Twitter uses #hashtags.  In both cases, there’s no feedback about whether you’ve correctly guessed a hashtag which other people are using

I’m sure some of you, dear readers, have managed to bring this mess under control.  How?

P.S. The diagram was originally an SVG, but WordPress doesn’t seem to support them.  Shame…


Written by Matt Zimmerman

June 26, 2009 at 10:02

Posted in Uncategorized

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22 Responses

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  1. I’ve had similar problems but Gwibber seems to be the best way to keep things under control, for me anyway. Luckily, I’ve not had the stability issues you’ve experienced with it, but then I think the flow of info via my accounts is probably a little less than yours ;)


    June 26, 2009 at 10:09

    • Gwibber (once it’s working again) does a good job of this on the desktop, but I also need something to use on the go (hence Twidroid). I’m still in the market for an Android client which can at least access both Twitter and identi.ca at the same time.


      June 26, 2009 at 15:07

  2. […] maze – http://bit.ly/14NgXm nice diagram of the micro-blogging hell we are creating #twitter […]

  3. Same here, I use Gwibber for handling almost all the flow.

    For the hashtag and group notation, this is how I handle it:
    – group notation if I want to say something to the whole group, like an announcement or if I want to ask something to one group
    – hashtag if I’m talking of something in general, but don’t want to bother the group with it.

    If I have to say “gwibber is great”, I’m not going “!gwibber is great”, but “#gwibber is great”.


    June 26, 2009 at 10:41

    • Thanks for the explanation regarding hashtags and groups.


      June 26, 2009 at 15:10

  4. Add Ping.fm, Friendfeed and a few other lifestream aggragators to the mix and it gets even more fun !

    Jean-Marc Liotier

    June 26, 2009 at 10:42

  5. […] guy needs help https://mdzlog.alcor.net/?p=411 .Quand tu te retrouv a microblogger (de) partout […]

  6. You may quit miccro-blogging ;-)


    June 26, 2009 at 11:35

  7. I do similar stuff, but took Facebook out of the loop as I was probably just annoying my non-techie friends there. I just post to identi.ca and that forwards to Twtr. I monitor both for replies. Different audiences on each. Updates get picked up on Friendfeed too.

    I’d love to consolidate on identi.ca, but some people will not leave Twitter as that’s where their audience/friends are. It’s manageable for now with Gwibber. Use Twhirl at work, but prefer a single window.

    I think I use groups an tags similarly to Milo.


    June 26, 2009 at 13:10

  8. I just stopped using twitter and indentica, fuck that shit!

    I’m only using facebook now.

    Dread Knight

    June 26, 2009 at 13:16

  9. I found that gwibber would crash all the time too. These days I use choqok, which hasn’t crashed for me yet and supports both Twitter and identi.ca.


    Russ Brown

    June 26, 2009 at 13:30

  10. Well let’s see whether Wave and the Federation protocol (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Wave) will solve all those issues and enable everyone to have central management of their communcations.


    June 26, 2009 at 14:25

  11. This is my maze, just for reference:


    June 26, 2009 at 14:54

    • Wow, that is lots worse. Is this what I have to look forward to if I keep going? :-)


      June 26, 2009 at 15:08

      • Things start getting dramatic with FriendFeed, because you start over-thinking the possibilities. If you want to keep it simple, stay clear from FF… but I suggest trying it: it’s a nice way to aggregate feeds.


        June 27, 2009 at 11:41

  12. I have the exact same setup, but I have no problems at all with Gwibber, using recent builds from PPA. My biggest issue is the lack of a client for Android that reads from both Facebook and Twitter/Identica. My tweets are automatically forwarded to Identica and Facebook, and it works fine both from Gwibber and Twidroid.


    June 26, 2009 at 16:05

  13. As Ross, I suggest you give a try to choqok.One cool thing with it — or at least something I like — is that when you click on a hashtag or a group, choqok automatically gives you the messages corresponding.

    Of course, if you are using GNOME, you may no like it’s a KDE app (but maybe it can be compiled only against Qt).

    As regards to the “groups” in identi.ca, a difference with the hashtags is that you have to subscribe to a group to be able to post in it; and when you subscribe to a group, you’ll receive all the messages with the !group.



    June 26, 2009 at 20:50

  14. I don’t care about monitoring Facebook, and I’m more interested in receiving things in near realtime. So while I use things like Gwibber and the web interfaces to both Twitter and identi.ca, more often, I’m monitoring things inside of Gmail using GChat. Identi.ca has an option to monitor and post via IM, and while Twitter doesn’t, I use Friendfeed to monitor various twitter users I follow and that way I can get their posts in realtime through GChat too.

    I posted about my setup a while ago: http://blog.rfquerin.org/2008/11/24/my-current-micromessaging-setup/

    I’m still not completely happy with it. I think there is tons of room for client improvements.

    Richard Querin

    June 28, 2009 at 23:49

  15. Did you try ping.fm
    Just register all your blogging/micro-blogging services there, and use their frontend to post your content to all those pages simultanously. It’s very straightforward and they provide tons of ways to post a blog (igoogle widget, email, their site, etc)


    June 29, 2009 at 11:08

  16. […] and micro-blogging sites, including all the above. The resulting flow of messages is best described here. I have also installed mobidentica, a light-weight Laconica/Identica client for Symbian S60, onto my […]

  17. I post to Identica that posts to Twitter that posts to Facebook.

    At home I mostly use Gwibber. I really like that it handles multiple accounts and allows me to easily select which one(s) I’m posting from.

    On the road I use either:
    * the identica webpage to post and I check replies in email, the Twitter/replies page and Facebook
    * or Twidroid on my G1. I just discovered it does both Twitter and Identica but you have to manually switch accounts to see the replies in each. They are working on supporting multiple accounts …



    July 20, 2009 at 21:33

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