Picture this scenario: You join a new office – for example’s sake, let’s say Digit – and start talking to your colleagues there. These days, a lot of people are on Twitter, but to individually add them all can be quite a task. Wouldn’t it be easier if you could just follow a list called ‘@Digit’, which would automatically add the addresses of all your colleagues too?
Or suppose a friend of yours follows a lot of Classic Rock musicians, or celebrities, which he has carefully chosen over time. If you want to emulate his list, you could simply ask him to create a ‘@classicrock’ list and share it with you, as well as the whole world.
Twitter is set to introduce just such a new feature, called ‘Lists’. It’s basically the same as creating groups in any social network, where you can categorise your friends by themes, interests, common relations, work, etc.
Nick Kallen, who is charge or Twitter Lists, wrote a blog post explaining the new feature:
The idea is to allow people to curate lists of Twitter accounts. For example, you could create a list of the funniest Twitter accounts of all time, athletes, local businesses, friends, or any compilation that makes sense.
Lists are public by default (but can be made private) and the lists you've created are linked from your profile. Other Twitter users can then subscribe to your lists. This means lists have the potential to be an important new discovery mechanism for great tweets and accounts.
We started working on this feature because of the frequent requests we received from people who were looking for a better way to organize information on Twitter. Of course, that means not just twitter.com—the Platform team will follow up in a few days with information on the Lists API. This will allow developers to add support for Lists into your favorite Twitter apps.
We're just doing limited testing for now. But once we've tested the feature out a bit, we'll launch it for all accounts!