Fetching relationship data to build a follower network



I am working a research project that involves studying networks of relationship (i.e. friends and followers) in Twitter. This requires obtaining lists of followers and friends for some set of users. To my knowledge, the only way to obtain the data necessary to build these networks is using the ‘followers’, ‘friends’, or ‘friendships’ methods of the API, but this doesn’t scale well to big networks because of the rate limits.

I was wondering whether it is possible to fetch relationship data faster through some other API mechanism. Alternatively, is it possible to obtain these data directly from Twitter or a third-party company?


For follower graph data you would just have to make do with the default limits and have a lot of time to do this kind of analysis.