As I say in my dissertation and elsewhere, informal scholarly communication in social media is both ephemeral and archival. Maybe this is new because some online traces intended to be for a limited number of recipients for immediate use have longer life and wide reach. Some utterances in social media live on well after the originator intended (for good and bad). But maybe it's not entirely new as certainly letters among scientists have been preserved (some of these were no doubt sent specifically for preservation purposes).
I've long been a fan of blogs for personal knowledge management, that is, thinking through readings, partial results, tutorials for how to do things. Blogs are easily searched, archived, migrated, shared, and don't enforce an artificial or proprietary structure found in other tools. However, I also know that long-term bloggers who have established a readership through careful, well-edited posts impose new barriers on themselves for using their blogs for this purpose. I found in my studies that some superstar bloggers almost entirely stopped blogging because they didn't want to post anything incomplete or partial and there were too many other things to do.
I think this has been one of the motivating factors for the use of Twitter for long threads of stories and analysis. Twitter has great reach and immediacy, and interactivity... but at the expense of search (although it is certainly better than it was) and preservation. Who of us hasn't dug through our likes and RT to try to find something interesting we saw ages ago?
We're using a platform specifically built for ephemeral communication for communication that should be saved and preserved.
So individuals who value this knowledge management function, or who appreciate careful analysis or good storytelling serialized over 10s of tweets have adopted Storify to gather and order and preserve and contextualize the pieces. Storify added tools to make it a bit easier. Instead of Storify, you could embed individual tweets (this embedding function also calls back to Twitter so really doesn't preserve). You could <eek> screenshot. you could even just write it up and quote the text.
And Storify is going away this Spring. We do have notice, luckily, but we still have a problem. We need to back our stuff up - we need to back other people's stuff up. Not everything is of the same value to the originator as it is to someone else.
My plea - and it will go unheard - is to put things back into blogs which you then tweet. Or back your useful tweets up to a blog?
FWIW, I'm trying to capture AGU meeting tweets and I'll load them into FigShare ... but the odds of some researcher capturing and saving your stuff is actually quite slim.
This post was inspired by a tweet that has a thread and interesting points by her interlocutors :
How about we stop being smug jerks to people who used Storify?
It's not helping and it's probably hurting.
If, as I keep saying, digital preservation is a relay race rather than a marathon, picking Storify was a reasonable enough decision.
— Ondatra iSchoolicus (@LibSkrat) December 14, 2017