Social Media

Twitter hasn’t killed RSS just yet, here’s how to find your Twitter feed RSS url

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Credit: Twitter
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Since redesigning its site Twitter has been accused of killing its previously open ecosystem.  The focus of the accusations comes from Twitter’s removal of RSS feeds on each user’s profile.  Twitter has said this is a design glitch that will be fixed but until that happens, if it ever will, there still are ways to get access a Twitter user’s RSS feed.

Twitter Planned Maintenance Message
Credit: Twitter

Previously if you visited a Twitter profile, such as http://twitter.com/thesociable, you could subscribe to a feed of that account’s tweets and favourite’d messages. Now Twitter only gives access to the user’s favourite’d messages.  So, what do you do if you want to subscribe to that user’s tweets?

[Update, 2011-05-05: We’ve added a post to show you how to get the RSS feed for a Twitter List here.]

Well, there are two ways to access Twitter RSS feeds.

The first method is the easiest, if you visit Twitter’s search page and search for a Twitter user’s handler, such as @thesociable, you can subscribe to an RSS for that search term (there is a link to the RSS feed on the top right of the page). Twitter has since removed this method, although you can still generate an RSS feed for a search term, although it’s a bit complicated.

For more information about finding Twitter RSS/Atom links;

With the second method if you want to subscribe directly to a user’s Twitter feed you need to do a small (but easy) bit of hacking.  A standard Twitter user’s RSS feed looks like this; http://twitter.com/statuses/user_timeline/XXX.rss

The XXX is an ID unique to each Twitter account.  To get your, or any Twitter user’s, RSS URL you should replace the XXX with their ID number.

There are a number of sites that can show you a user’s id, such as idfromuser.com, which will reveal a user’s ID from their Twitter username.  So, using this the Sociable’s Twitter url is http://twitter.com/statuses/user_timeline/174451720.rss.

If, on the off chance, you want to subscribe to Justin Bieber’s RSS feed (and why wouldn’t you…) you can use this address http://twitter.com/statuses/user_timeline/27260086.rss.

You can then subscribe to these feeds using your favourite RSS client such as Google Reader or Firefox.

87 Comments

      1. @pdscott @ricc.sm

        The first method doesn’t show the user’s feed – just tweets featuring their username.

        The second method works in Google Reader, but I’m trying to view these feeds via MS Sharepoint and it can’t find them. I don’t know if it’s a Microsoft thing – IE7 doesn’t seem to like them either.

  1. @pdscott @ricc.sm

    The first method doesn’t show the user’s feed – just tweets featuring their username.

    The second method works in Google Reader, but I’m trying to view these feeds via MS Sharepoint and it can’t find them. I don’t know if it’s a Microsoft thing – IE7 doesn’t seem to like them either.

  2. Something I’d really like to see is a new breed of RSS for the social web, something that you can actually glean reliable stats from with a kind of decentralised architecture, so you can see how many people are following your content, regardless of where they follow it.

    Ah we can dream 🙂

  3. Something I’d really like to see is a new breed of RSS for the social web, something that you can actually glean reliable stats from with a kind of decentralised architecture, so you can see how many people are following your content, regardless of where they follow it.

    Ah we can dream 🙂

    1. @MattieTK That would actually be pretty nice. You can kind of do that with Google Feedburner (although the site is really, really ugly). The stats are nice but it isn’t really that social. Google Reader has more of a social end to it and they might get near something like this with Google+ integration coming soon.

      It’s funny how RSS/XML powers most of the social web but isn’t that social itself.

  4. @MattieTK That would actually be pretty nice. You can kind of do that with Google Feedburner (although the site is really, really ugly). The stats are nice but it isn’t really that social. Google Reader has more of a social end to it and they might get near something like this with Google+ integration coming soon.

    It’s funny how RSS/XML powers most of the social web but isn’t that social itself.

  5. […] of effort to include Twitter feeds into your RSS readers. After some browsing, I was able to find this website that details two different methods of locating an RSS for Twitter accounts, which is very useful if […]

  6. Unfortunately, there is no RSS icon on the upper right hand side of a search page on Twitter….

    How can I find an RSS feed of a search in Twitter?

  7. Unfortunately, there is no RSS icon on the upper right hand side of a search page on Twitter….

    How can I find an RSS feed of a search in Twitter?

  8. Thanks for this!

    It solved my twitter widget issues in wordpress by using this to add a twitter rss feed instead.

  9. Thanks for this!

    It solved my twitter widget issues in wordpress by using this to add a twitter rss feed instead.

  10. […] It has been a while since I wanted to RSS a Twitter feed. It used to be that every user’s Twitter page had an RSS feed with it, making subscribing easy. That changed at some point (early 2011 based on time stamps of people trying to figure the new situation out?). Mainly for self-reminder purposes, here is how to create an RSS feed off a Twitter page/feed: […]

  11. 14 October 2012, 10 am, watching Frasier 🙂
     
    Twitter has killed off the old style of RSS feed URL but the URLs I’ve collected here should work until 5 March 2013 when Twitter switches off support for RSS entirely.
     
    http://brodiesnotes.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/has-twitter-killed-rss-feeds-yet.html
     
    They are (just swap your screen name or search term for my examples):
     
    User: https://api.twitter.com/1/statuses/user_timeline.rss?screen_name=jobrodie
    Mentions: http://search.twitter.com/search.atom?q=@jobrodie
    Favourites: http://api.twitter.com/1/favorites.rss?screen_name=jobrodie
    Search: http://search.twitter.com/search.atom?q=fluffy%20bunnies (%20 acts as ‘space’)
    Hashtag search: http://search.twitter.com/search.atom?q=%23scicomm  (%23 acts as ‘#’)
     
    If your feed URL looks like this http://twitter.com/statuses/user_timeline/jobrodie.rss then it probably won’t work.
     
    Tell your friends 🙂
    Jo

    1. @JoBrodie Thanks for your tip. The old link just broke recently, so we needed a new link. I found yours. So the twitterfeeds on http://www.cloudtec.ch are working again.
      To add here. If you parse the regular rss feed with a server side tool , like PHP and CURL you don’t want to put https:// just use regular http:// for the user feed. Twitter will redirect it to https…

    1. I’m not sure that that has ever been possible, largely because RSS doesn’t allow you to log in so the feed doesn’t know which tweets to show you because it doesn’t know that you’re you. Also, it wouldn’t be able to show you the tweets of any private accounts that you follow (it can only show you the public stuff).
      Having said all that, I do have the feeling that I have once seen this but I’m not certain. You can (until Twitter fully kills off everything RSS-ish – it may have already happen, should be happening this month) see messages sent to you (containing your @name) or messages that you’ve sent, or everything tagged with a hashtag – but I don’t think you can read the timeline that you’d see when you’re logged in to Twitter (in the same way you can’t see it when you’re logged out).
      Jo

      1. Do you remember any of the words in the tweet, you could search
        (probably on Google if more than a week has passed) for it.
        Alternatively do you remember if a link was in it? If you happened to
        notice the website you could search for the domain URL, eg http://sociable.co as that would find any link posted from that domain. Bit of a longshot. 
        Failing
        that can you just use the endless scroll feature and scroll back until
        you see it? Or if you think you know who might have tweeted it, check on
        their timeline.
        I take it you didn’t favourite it or email it to yourself, which I obviously recommend for next time.
        Good luck,
        Jo

      2. Re: Endless scroll. It stops after a few days. I don’t know why. Is the the standard thing? I seem to remember I used to be able to go back at least a month or two, by holding down on the End button on my keyboard for a long time.

  12. The RSS has now been removed from Twitter and the API has been switched off. It is still possible to create a Twitter Tweet RSS feed.The video in this link explain how to do it http://youtu.be/lDIlzualBsQ

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  16. Deliver.it doesn’t recognize my twitter RSS feed.
    When I tried to include my twitter RSS, I created with the help of this article, into the deliver.it RSS field, deliver.it says it can’t find it.
    Anybody knows what’s going on?
    My idea is to share my Twitter feed directly into mu LinkedIn account, but it doesn’t work.
    Help, please.

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Piers Dillon Scott
Piers Dillon-Scott is co-editor of The Sociable and writes about stuff he finds. He likes technology, media, and using the Oxford comma (because it just makes sense).