Site Updates and News

For now, this is more of a news feed than a blog, but you get the idea.

October 19th, 2010

Updated stats page to make things easier to read.

September 18th, 2010

Featured promotion added to the front page.

September 17th, 2010

A big change! Messages no longer have to contain the @tweetswin username to be counted. This is a major change, and one that I feel should boost participation. It's always been my opinion that requiring people to follow two users might be asking too much. In the past I had to require follows and mentions of the @tweetswin name to track entries but that's all changed now that the site is using my improved backend.

This is a transition period... I'm working hard on version 2.0 of this site, which has a ton of new features. To be honest, I'm worried that not having the @tweetswin name in the entries will cause a loss of followers... but I feel it's best service for my users. Either way this is a test at best, and if I find I'm bleeding followers I will have to rethink it. The new site will be incredible, I promise you.

I want to thank everyone for using the site and keeping my interest for so long, I can't wait to share the new version.

Changes to the Giveaway Pages

  1. Added Disqus to the giveaway page, allows comments right on the page.
  2. Removed AddThis Button and Scripts
  3. Added Facebook "Like This" button to giveaway pages.
  4. Added Twitter Button to giveaway pages, for one-click entries!

by Justin

September 10, 2010

Adjusted api call rates, changed mentions api to include missing retweets.

by Justin

September 07, 2010

Added additional validation to the new contest form. Made the description box a text area instead of a input box.

by Justin

September 03, 2010

Further SEO updates, fixed a link issue on the listing page.

by Justin

September 02, 2010

Bug review in new contests, found the creation command was still using basic auth. Fixed and updated active giveaways.

by Justin

August 31st, 2010 Part 1

Small update today includes an attempt at SEO optimization and more backend enhancements.

by Justin

August 22nd, 2010

Four noteworthy updates were put into production Sunday August 22nd, 2010. This page on the site happens to be one of them. For now, this is more of a news feed than a blog, but you get the idea. I wanted to take a minute to go over some recent changes that went live on the site and I realized I did not have a page available to do so.

OAuth. The site was using basic auth, and is now using oauth since Twitter is phasing basic auth out this month. I have to admit I was putting it off and I finally had to do it to keep the site going beyond Aug 31st. This is the first of a few upcoming changes related to OAuth. I never created an authentication method for users to log in with because I don't like asking for Twitter credentials or making users maintain yet another username and password. I'd like to add user specific content and I will be doing so someday using OAuth so users can "allow" this site to access their Twitter data without giving me a password. First things on my list are the abilities to edit or delete contests and have more control of the winners. When that update is released I will also look into adding "manual giveaways" so users that want to pick their own winner can do so. I will also be adding "listing-only" options so Twitter contests can be listed here but not tracked. I will have to see how that goes though, I think it could be hard to keep the spam out.

Moved the follow requirement for entry registering to the winner selection module. That means that entries will no longer be lost because Twitter reports a user isn't following. The winning entry will need to be following, but every entry will be collected from now on whether they are following the host or not. This should bump the entry count up for everyone. Yay! This is a really good thing, some users were following a host and then tweeting before the Twitter service picked up on the follow so the entry was lost. I had to do manual rewinds for big giveaways and it just wasn't working good enough for me.

Added Bit.Ly url expansion. I noticed the number of Bit.Ly urls increasing, so I added a call to their api to expand and count those entries. This is yet another item that should help bump up the entry count accross the board. I have to make a note here, my urls are shorter than the replacements, so I don't know what client is "shrinking" them to a larger string but whatever.

I should also mention that there will be a new sponsored promotion coming up soon. You will see a sticky "sponsored promotion" at the top of the contest listing pages and a banner ad on each contest page. I'm still not running ads on this site, because I don't see the point on a hob
by site. Traffic has decreased a bit lately so I'll be seeing if I can promote the site a little better. That's it for now, thanks everyone for using the site!

by Justin