The day rotating tweets (spinnable text) died; I'm not convinced it was a crime.

For the past few months, I have been a subscriber to a service that was first called then changed its name to The concept has been a good one for me and I have been able to reach more people in different time zones who might otherwise miss my tweets. I am not pretending that I am writing such valuable pearls of wisdom that the world will change by reading them, but it is nice to be able to repeat my tweets, phrased a bit differently each time, every day or so for a few days in different time zones so that they are read. In fact, with over 132,000 customers, I was not the only person using this service. Even reputable tweeters like @MacTweeter and other tech blogs have been rotating their tweets over a couple of days.

On October 12, 2009 Socialoomph notified its customers that effective October 15, they will no longer be repeating or rotating tweets. They were told by Twitter that this practice is in violation of their terms of service as it is the equivalent of spam. They quoted the following on their service blog:

"Recurring Tweets are a violation no matter how they are done, including whether or not someone pays you to have a special privilege. We don’t want to see any duplicate tweets whatsoever- They pollute Twitter, and tools shouldn’t be given to enable people to break the rules. Spinnable text seems to just be a way to bypass the rules against duplicate updates and essentially provides the same problems."

From spam that I have received at times, it is usually pretty obvious when you look back at that person or bot's list of tweets and see that every single tweet has been identical. I think just blocking the exact repeats makes sense to help minimize some spam clutter. As for rotating tweets in order for our info to reach more people and not get buried, is this a matter of twitter simply not being able to increase their capacity fast enough so they are ordering the end of spinnable text or do they really feel that we are polluting the world with our words.

I have found that most of my tweets that get retweeted are NOT my first tweet but rather one of my rotated versions of the first one. This must be related to living on the west coast of canada and the morning round going out when people not checking their tweets as often in other time zones and the evening ones hitting most of the potential audience when everyone is asleep. Since many apps still don't load beyond the past 200 tweets in a feed, the odds are very high if people don't check-in with twitter for more than a few hours that they have missed many tweets.

I just want to be able to have my messages reach people and spinnable text facilitates this. I am not convinced that banning tools to facilitate this, such as those offered by, is a crime.

Update on Friday, July 22, 2011 at 3:02PM

(This comment was copied from original submission date and posted as a journal follow-up article in preparation for changing to DISQUS for future commenting on my blog.)

Brent Cummmings