Local Trends on Twitter

location-based trending topics, local trends on Twitter in KingstonIn light of tonight’s Limestone New Media Group (LNMG) meetup, the first session of the New Year, I thought that today’s post should focus on an aspect of social media.  Just before Kingstonist’s first birthday, we caved and joined the tweeting masses.  While we’ve been on Twitter for less than a year, @kingstonist has already amassed 405 followers and we’ve recorded 1,088 tweets.  Despite our initial reluctance to join Twitter, it has paid huge dividends as it has allowed Kingstonist to attract new readers, and connect with people on a whole new level.

Over the past year, the greatest challenge we’ve had to overcome is ensuring that Twitter isn’t simply a regurgitation of Kingstonist’s RSS feed.  Each and every time we publish something new on our site, chances are that it will likely end up on our Twitter feed.  However, we’ve put in a considerable amount of time re-tweeting, and engaging in conversations, which on occasion, have spilled over to Email.  After all, there’s only so much you can say to a person in 140 character or less.

Twitter has implemented a few changes since we joined, most notably the addition of user-generated lists.  As @kingstonist only follows folks who live, work and play in the Limestone City, we have yet to identify a real need to employ this feature.  On the horizon, we have become aware of a new feature, which will make Twitter all the more relevant to Kingston.  Specifically, Twitter is planning on rolling out location-based trending topics, which will enable users to see which keywords, hashtags and stories are popular in their respective geographic area.  Here’s what Mashable can tell us about this new feature:

  • Local Trends allows you to set a specific location, so that you can see the trends around you. Most of the time, this would be your home. However, it looks like you can change it on-the-fly if you’re travelling, for example.
  • Clicking on Local Trends gives you a list of different cities and countries in which you can view trends. It’s a limited list so far — only 15 U.S. cities are supported.
  • You can access these trending topics from Twitter.com, on the right-hand column.
  • A full rollout should occur sometime next week (read: this week as the story was published on Jan 22nd), if testing goes smoothly.

Presently global trending topics are simply too cluttered with garbage such as #thoughtsonthetoilet, Kanye West vs Taylor Swift, fake celebrity deaths and the list goes on.  Accordingly, location-based trending topics will help increase our awareness of important issues in the community, and make Twitter more relevant for the hyper-local set.

Thanks to mallix for today’s image, which displays the avatars of his/her class from 2008

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  1. laura_carter January 27, 2010
  2. Harvey Kirkpatrick January 27, 2010
  3. Harvey Kirkpatrick January 27, 2010

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