Twitter today announced on its blog that citizens of the Web can now share tweets from certain hashtags or users via an embedding code. Much like Storify or Kickstarter, both of which have little widgets you can incorporate into your online post, the new feature will be fully interactive — allowing viewers to click for a direct link to the source as well as favorite, reply, or retweet right from the embedded box.
“Whether it’s an author’s Tweets alongside their blog, a hashtag about an event like #DNC2012, or a list of competitors at the US Open, Tweets add a live, real-time dimension to articles, news reports, and the web at large,” Twitter writes on its blog. “These new embeddable timelines enable publishers, writers, developers, and any Twitter user to drop a rich, interactive piece of Twitter into their websites.”
Here’s an example of our Twitter feed embedded into the post. As you can see, hashtags are clickable and will bring you to the search feature on the Twitter site itself. If there are any photos of videos, expanding the tweet will also display the media as you’d typically find on your Twitter stream.
You can customize your Twitter timeline by going to the settings page on your account. Under widgets, you can add the Twitter handle of the person(s) you want to timeline, a hashtag, or your favorites, or your lists. Be forewarned that since the update arrives in real-time, vague hashtags may show some inappropriate or irrelevant tweets considering the amounts of users on the Twitterverse.
The new feature will undoubtedly be a useful tool for engaging the audience and conversation, and possibly add flavor to existing posts by combining the public reactions and comments from Twitter straight to your story. Of course, if you want to just pick and choose particular tweets to support a point in your post, Storify may still be a better route despite its nonexistent real-time capacity.