Ever since the start of the website about two years ago we have had one thing which was a bit annoying: we didn’t ‘have’ the @stateofsearch Twitter account. That account was taken by an Italian artist who lived in Dublin. We tried contacting her in different ways to try and take the Twitter account of her hands. After all, she had not used the Twitter account since she claimed it in 2009. There was only one tweet on it. We never got in touch with her and were therefor “forced” to use the Twitter account @state_ofsearch, so with the underscore.
We have ‘lived’ like that for two years. Until today. As of today we now own the Twitter account @stateofsearch. All followers of @state_ofsearch have been ‘moved’ to @stateofsearch, so if you were following us already: don’t worry, you will still see the same updates, you only have to keep an eye on the @replies you do towards us, but we’ll keep monitoring that, also because we also own @state_ofsearch. And if you are not following us: what? Do it right now!
The process of getting the Twitter account seems long, in fact it turned out to be quite easy. Within 10 days everything was fixed. Let me explain how I got the account, without actually getting in touch with the account owner.
The first step is to check if you can take the account from the original owner, that probably is the fastest way.
Step 2: Check if the account being used
Important here is whether or not the owner is actually using the Twitter account. If they are you will hardly stand a chance with Twitter, if they are not, you might have a good shot at getting it if the owner won’t give it to you or can’t be reached.
Twitter’s Terms of Service are clear on this: “To keep your account active, be sure to log in and Tweet (i.e., post an update) within 6 months of your last update. Accounts may be permanently removed due to prolonged inactivity.”
Step 3: Submit an Impersonation Claim
The next step is going to Twitter and getting in touch with them. They have a special form you can fill in to “Report an account for impersonation“. Here I chose the option “I am being impersonated.” You then get a form which you have to fill in with as much detail as you can.
Very important here is the “About the impersonating account“-part. Here you have to fill in how this account is an impersonation. Make sure you explain as much as possible, the fact for example that the account had not been used in a few years was important here, as well as the fact that we had the actual url to go with it. I also added “A lot of @replies to us are sent to them”, to give it some extra ‘schwung’.
Within a few minutes I received a auto-confirmation e-mail from Twitter that they would go and look at the claim.
Step 4: When the claim is acknowledged: connect to your account
After 8 days I received an e-mail saying that Twitter was able to release the username for me. They asked me to create a Twitter account or if I already had a Twitter account to reply to the e-mail so they could connect it.
I replied back that the account could be connected to @state_ofsearch.
Two days later (late yesterday afternoon) I received an e-mail that the transition was done: @state_ofsearch was now @stateofsearch
Step 5: Claim your ‘old’ Twitter account
One thing you then should not forget doing is to claim your “old” account, in my case @state_ofsearch. That after all was released when the username was transitioned. I claimed that right away to make sure nobody else would who could then mis-use it for something. I made sure that Twitter bio points at the new account. After all, there might be other sites on the web pointing at this Twitter account as being ours, we don’t want to lose those followers!
Step 6: Change your own references to the account
On our own properties we have many links pointing to our Twitter account. We now have to change all those references on the site.
Thats it. So from now on: (re)-tweet @stateofsearch!