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Some stream of consciousness thinking here about the opportunities that may (or may not) have opened up with Twitter lists.

I look after the open university twitter account and today put out a tweet asking followers what lists they wanted creating / or wanted to join. I got a massive response and although the majority of the lists currently contain only one or two people I hope that will change over time.

The types of lists that I was asked to create fall into one of two categories: either a course list DD101 or a subject list Law. The first of these is great because it enables students / alumni of particular courses to come together in a way which is a little more formal than following a hashtag.

I wonder if it’s the second of these (law / psychology etc) which holds real promise for the organisation using twitter in terms of developing partnerships with other organisations in order to create extra value.

Already students have asked me to add the law society gazette , the law society for england and wales and the law society scotland to the law list and this made me wonder about how this might encourage us (as twitter accounts or even organisations) to work together to create extra value for people who use the list. I’m sure we all have resources available to us that each others’ followers would appreciate.

On a related note, if we are to build up really valuable subject-specific lists I really need a way of feeding content into specific lists using hastags. Anyone know of a way?

EDIT: I also need a way to sync list followers with people in the list – kind of like an automatic follow for people who follow you. I think this is the right approach to take (is it?!?) since the value of the list is created by the people in it. you follow the list because it is something you re interested in / tweet about. If that is the case other people on the list want to know about that content.

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  • Tony Hirst

    October 30, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    “if we are to build up really valuable subject-specific lists I really need a way of feeding content into specific lists using hastags. Anyone know of a way?”

    If Twitter open up some list creation API methods, I’ll have a go at generating lists from my hashtag network things ( http://ouseful.wordpress.com/2009/08/11/whos-tweeting-our-hashtag/ http://ouseful.wordpress.com/2009/09/23/finding-hashtag-communities/ etc )

  • admin

    October 30, 2009 at 5:39 pm

    cheers tony. I’ll keep my ears open.
    I suspect there are going to be thousands of duplicate lists. If twitter lists catch on it seems obvious that the most popular lists will be those that offer the most relevant information (value) and perhaps those lists where members have agreed to work together in order to provide quality (and therefore authority?)

  • Martyn Cooper

    October 30, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    Not sure about the syncing the automatic follow for people who follow you. Multiple communities are represented in both my followers and those I follow. Is this not going to generate irrelevant members on lists – or am I missing something?

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