Twitter Newspapers?

Twitter has a seemingly infinite amount of third party tools available to its users that allow them to add small wrinkles to their interface or to completely change the way their account will function. The example relevant to class that I found is called Paper.li (pronounced pay-per-lee). Paper.li is an application that compiles specific items  from the user’s twitter feed and places them into a conventional newspaper format. It does this by prompting for keywords or hashtags it uses to grab posts from the user’s feed. For example if I told Paper.li to find “college football news” the application would search my feed, compiling all the articles relevant to college football news, and create a college football only newspaper for me completely based off of my own twitter feed. The fact that it only searches a specific user’s feed is important because it allows the user to be very specific about the type of news that it searches. If I only follow the various Davidson College sports twitter accounts, then I will only have a newspaper comprised from their posts alone.

Paper.li’s example of a Beer themed paper. 

Paper.li is relevant to this class because it is a very unique form of electronic literature. Paper.li’s actual appearance is close to that of a conventional paper copy newspaper, but it creates this newspaper in a very specific automated manner from twitter with each story having its own link. This is interesting to me because I never would have thought of using twitter, a very unconventional way of getting news, to create something resembling a conventional newspaper in this way. However, the results are astonishing and many users of this software have even became popular from sharing their “newspaper” with their followers via (you guessed it) twitter. 

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