Friday, September 16, 2011

Twitter, the Missing RSS and the Graffiti

I was recently setting it up so that the tweets from my ParsedContent Solutions twitter feed would be propagated to my Facebook page of the same name.  At first I was trying to figure out the best way to do this.  Sure, I could have activated the Facebook integration inside the Twitter account, but it was stating that it would post that to MY Facebook wall, which is not what I wanted, I wanted it to go to my businesses wall.

Well, after some digging and reading, I activated a Facebook application called RSS Graffiti.    Its an interesting app because it manages the posting of your feed to your different pages and it handles multiple so its really cool.  The settings in the app allow you to tell it where to post what feed and how often to poll for new content.

In setting it up, you have to first give the application permission to post to your page's wall.  This isn't a problem since that is what I am wanting.  After that though you are asked for your feed url.  Now, on Twitter you used to find the atypical orange RSS feed button near the bottom right side of your page.  You would have just had to click on it to see the feed url and copy it.  Well, I didn't see it and started a bit of a search to try and find it or something else that I could use.  I finally found an intriguing article that enlightened me to the fact that Twitter had officially removed the RSS button and feed, but that was only in lieu of their API, which they prefer everyone use.

Yes, this is a break from what standards would dictate, but its their service and you unfortunately have to conform to their way of operating.  The article did enlighten everyone to the url that you would need to use for your feed which is as follows:

In the above you would simply replace 'username' with your twitter id.  You can test this url by copying and pasting it into your browser's url bar as it will work fine.  Once you have it you simply plug it into RSS Graffiti and voila, a feed to pull from.

Keep in mind when that even after putting in the feed URL into RSS Graffiti, I recommend you go through the settings for the app and ensure its posting the way you want it to.  There are 3 options for posting:

  1. Standard:  This posts the tweet to your wall and states its from the Twitter feed.  Recommended for most feeds.
  2. Compact: For publishing shorts from things like Twitter without changing your Facebook status.
  3. Status Updates:  This posts the tweets to your wall as if it were a Facebook Status update.  You can't even tell that this came from the Twitter feed.
Whatever you choose, test it to make sure its what you want.

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