A proposed tag for including Wikipedia links in Twitter posts

I’ve had another idea!

I saw Matthew Somerville () tweet:

Reading about http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clothianidin and bees

and it occurred to me, both that a fantastically high number of Wikipedia links are tweeted, and that Wikipedia URLs are relatively long. This latter fact might have been significant, if Matthew had needed to say a few more words, or was talking about something with a longer name. He could have shortened his link, using, say, Bit.ly, but then he’d have had to repeat the stem:

Reading about Clothianidin http://bit.ly/dE6pUf and bees

which is hardly shorter, and disrupts the flow.

What if we agreed a special tag, say W# or w:, used like this:

Reading about w:Clothianidin and bees

and Twitter clients automatically swapped that for a Wikipedia link:

Reading about Clothianidin and bees


Twitter clients could allow users to set their preferred language-version of Wikipedia, and perhaps find the relevant translations of articles (which Wikipedia could better facilitate, using rel=alternate headers), authors could also specify a language, such as w:fr:brie or w:de:München

4 thoughts on “A proposed tag for including Wikipedia links in Twitter posts

  1. simon gray

    How would the client know to link to ‘Clothianidin and bees’ as opposed to ‘Clothianidin and’, ‘Clothianidin’, or ‘Clothianidin and bees mating rituals’ ?


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