For many years, iKeepSafe has cautioned that the internet is a public forum and never truly private, and this statement is more true now than ever with the announcement that all Tweets since Twitter’s inception in 2006 will be stored in the Library of Congress. 1
Twitter said 55 million tweets are generated per day, and the total since 2006 is somewhere in the billions.2 The Library of Congress will store all Twitter updates that have been posted for six months for all to see for many years to come.
Additionally, Google announced a new feature that allows you to search the public archive of Tweets.3 Google said this feature is currently in its beginning stages, but will eventually encompass all public Tweets since 2006. To use this feature, click on "Show options" on the search results page, and then click on "Updates."
If these announcements worry you, remember that you can always make your Twitter account private by clicking on "Settings" and then the "Protect my tweets" box at the bottom of the page.
Nobody wants an embarrassing moment archived in the Library of Congress. We encourage you to use these Twitter announcements to teach your children the importance of creating a positive online reputation and remember that the internet is a public place.
1Raymond, Matt. "How Tweet It Is!: Library Acquires Entire Twitter Archive." (14 April, 2010). Library of Congress Blog. Retrieved from http://blogs.loc.gov/loc/2010/04/how-tweet-it-is-library-acquires-entire-twitter-archive/
2"Tweet Preservation." (14 April, 2010). Twitter Blog. Retrieved from http://blog.twitter.com/2010/04/tweet-preservation.html
3"Replay it: Google Search Across the Twitter Archive." (14 April, 2010). The Official Google Blog. Retrieved from http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/04/replay-it-google-search-across-twitter.html