Should we stream posts to Twitter?

Since the first communities are now live on qpixel and we are ready to share a new Q&A home with the outside world, would it be profitable to automate the process of sharing posts to Twitter and/or other social media? Monica has already made some manual “check out this question” tweets on the Codidact account, but presumably a significant amount of the work of identifying good questions to share and posting them could be automated.

Long term I envision a curation feature where high-TL / rep users can vote for certain questions to enter a Twitter posting queue, but short term maybe an algorithm that just looks for new posts with high activity would be sufficient. We could then add some appropriate fluff and push them to the Codidact Twitter account in a draft state ready for publishing (long term we’d autopost).

Is this something that would be helpful and/or desirable? Should this be part of the main Codidact account or should there be a separate “Best of Codidact” account (or should each sub-community have its own sub-account)? Is this something to go ahead and implement or should we wait until we have a higher concentration of experience immigrants from SE?

Benefits - increased visibility and engagement on the product, easy to communicate and point back to Codidact, strong Twitter communities

Downsides - not necessarily reaching the core audience we want to attract, sites are not yet ready to handle possible influx of new users on controversial questions.


I’d say we go for it, as long as the questions are at least somewhat curated - we don’t want to push just everything, but if we pushed posts that meet some criteria, that could work. For example, we could select posts that:

  • Are over a minimum length AND
  • Have an answer over a minimum length OR
  • Have over a specified score threshold.

Or we could choose something else - as long as it’s a household faucet not a hydrant line, it’ll be fine. The Codidact Twitter account is low-volume enough that we can just publish them from the main account - for now, at least, until we have more communities and higher volume.


I think it would be good to be a bit restrictive to this. I’d say that we should wait until we can see that we have a somewhat steady progress going on. The end should be within sight, even if it’s far away. A roadmap that states what has been accomplished, what’s left and an approximation of how much more time it would take.


The kind of people that hang out on Twitter aren’t necessarily the kind that make the best members for some types of Q&A communities. Twitter is a global Kaffeklatsch. Advertising the more social kinds of sites there might make sense. Conversely, scraping Twitter for members of sites that require high technical discipline and careful thought could mess up the culture of such sites.


On the other hand, a lot of current and former SE users hang out on Twitter, so judicious publication of new communities and interesting questions there seems helpful.

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Okay, so something to be considered at a later date perhaps. We can return to the question when we have a few more communities up and running. There are several ways I could see tweets being chosen, possibly something where a community can opt-in and nominate particularly high quality posts being ideal. I agree with @ArtOfCode that we need to really filter, especially as we grow.

My experience with this on Another Site™ was that the auto-tweets used essentially the same criteria as HNQ and had the same deleterious effects. It absolutely needs some community input to ensure that the threads which are showcased are “Best Of” material and not just highly upvoted because they’re lowest common denominator. That doesn’t necessarily preclude automation if it looks at criteria like upvotes by established members of the community, discounting upvotes from passers-by who aren’t invested in the site, but while a site is still in “beta” phase I think that pro-tem moderators should have to actively approve each tweet.