There’s a story in each 140 character tweet we send out. Collect 400 million of them each day, and you have the story of a country. The Library of Congress certainly thinks so, as it sets about archiving the millions of tweets sent by Americans each day. The Library of Congress is the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States and the de facto guardian of the ‘American memory’, covering the nation’s cultural contributions for more than two centuries. In April 2010, Twitter signed a deal with the LOC giving it access to tweets dating back to the beginning of tweeting. Now they are continually archiving the data.
That’s where the challenge for the Library lies. Though it maintains archives of millions of books and even massive digital collection, keeping pace with the 200 million users and half-a-billion tweets per day is an overwhelming task.
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