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What's "Tweaking the Tweet"?

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, August 12 2010

Judging from the Twitter stream, one topic under discussion at today's Red Cross summit on applying social media to disasters is something called "tweak the tweet." 'Tis an old idea, finds Google, but on the chance that it might be as new to you as it was to me, here's how one participant in the post-Haiti response described it a few months back:

The new syntax is pretty easy to learn. Every tweet should contain at least one main tag like #need [explain need], #offering or #injured [name]. You can find a full list of main tags here. In addition, tweets can also have data tags like #name [name], #loc [location] or #contact [email, phone etc.]. These tweets can also contain often-used keywords that don't need the hashtag sign like food, supplies, road, hospital or help.

It's actually rather like the system we developed for our Twitter Vote Report project way back when, only we didn't think of something catchy to call it. The gist, though, is the same: figuring out a light-weight way into nudging people into producing information-heavy tweets. The rest is here.