Have you ever put together that questionable 140 character outburst or ‘observation’ and then experienced ‘tweeter’s remorse’ when you sent the poorly designed nugget of wisdom? It’s like that e-mail you didn’t want to hit send on (those really suck though because in most cases you have no recourse other than to start putting together an apology / explanation immediately). At least with Twitter you have always had the opportunity to ‘delete the tweet’ but Twitter had an annoying little habit of keeping that nasty little bugger in their search index. That was at least until recently. TechCrunch reported
Now, when you delete a tweet, it will instantaneously be removed from Twitter’s search index as well. We’ve tested it out this morning, and it is in fact the case. Even better, those tweets are also removed from the search API. We’ve tested several third party apps, and none contain the tweets that I deleted.
This is good news for users from a privacy perspective, as deleted tweets showing up in searches have been troublesome in the past. In one extreme example, a series of tweets that were sent the night two people died in a sweat lodge, but then were deleted, resurfaced on Twitter search.
So for all of folks out there with a quick ‘Twitter finger’ or your return / send mechanism has a ‘hair Twitter’ (you know, like a hair trigger, get it?) there is hope.
Apparently, this improvement just happened to coincide with the big announcements that bing and Google would be getting Twitter’s feeds for indexing in their engines. The timing is good though since having those bad tweets removed from Twitter is nice but not having them show up in every SERP from now until the second coming is even better.
Now don’t get too excited because all those tweets that you have deleted are likely to reside somewhere just waiting to surface in some odd way to embarrass you. So don’t ‘Drink and tweet’ or ‘Tweet responsibly’ and this won’t be an issue.