Time to clean out old Tweets so they won't define you the rest of your life

DataSift deal turns fly-by-minute Twitter thoughts into shapers of your permanent record

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DataSift is taking the whole Twitter Firehose – the full feed of all Twitter accounts, as opposed to the Spritzer and GardenHose settings on Twitter's Streaming API, which return 1 percent and 10 percent of all Twitter messages, respectively.

DataSift is the first vendor to get full Firehose access not only to the full content of the current feed, but the last two years of stored content as well.

According to the press release, DataSift will absorb all 250 million daily Tweets and all the daily Tweets going back to January, 2010. That's a lot of data, even if most of it is trivial musings on what you plan to have for lunch. Or how much you hated it. Or who you went out with, who you may not like any more.

So…Time to review and delete some of those old Tweets?

If you're at all prolific – or even if you're not – the number of Twitter messages builds up really fast.

One Tweet a week is 52 per year is 104 for two years. That's not a big number unless you can't change or delete more than one at a time.

Twitter, by the way, only allows you to change or delete one Tweet at a time. If you Tweet once per day, there are at least 730 Tweets in there waiting to be dealt with one by one.

Luckily there are a couple of options from outside companies that make the cleanup a little easier.

Delete all my Tweets

If you're the trash-and-burn type, TwitWipe is probably the simplest option.

Sign up for the service, give it access to your Twitter account and tell it to wipe out all your messages.

Do it when you have plenty of time; it takes "A BLOODY LONG TIME," according to the TwitWipe home page. "Because TwitWipe is very popular, there are tooooooo many people wiping their accounts at any given point in time. So just start the process and just leave it on overnight. I'm serious. It is NOT instant. It will take a while. Don't tell me it's stuck at 0, because that happens and all you gotta do is WAIT."

If you get disconnected mid-delete, go back to the site whenever you notice and start the wipe again.

Delete just the Tweets I want to delete

If you'd rather be a little selective, or would rather delete just the Tweets older than a certain date, the most-often-cited available option is TwitLAN.com, though I found it clunkier and slower than TweetEraser (see below).

Photo Credit: 

Reuters

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