I attended a #tapintotwitter event last week and asked a question about the endpoints related to retrieving a user’s friends/followers graph. I would like to request a modification to these endpoints that would allow submission of a timestamp that would retrieve the friends and followers graph that was active at that particular time. The timestamp would need to reference a time in the past up to the point of the first tweet to be a legal value. The ids for a user’s friends and followers that are returned would be the ones that user had at the given time.
I am a co-director of a research project that uses Twitter to study how people communicate during times of mass emergency. We will collect data on an event and then study it months later. When we find an interesting user in an event we would like to be able to see the friends and followers graph that they had back when the event was active as opposed to the time we are analyzing the event. Having the ability to specify a timestamp for these endpoints would help us accurately reconstruct an interesting user’s social graph during the time of a particular mass emergency event.
I didn’t know where to post this request, so feel free to move this post to a different forum if feature requests are not an appropriate topic for the REST API forum. Thank you.