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Twitter Search Cheat Sheet

The following is a list of Twitter advanced search operators. Bookmark this page, and use it as a reference for precise Twitter searches.

The account level operators are among the most useful of Twitter’s advanced search operators. They make it extremely easy so see what specific accounts have said about a topic and how they’ve interacted with one another. Account searches are also not restricted by blocks. For example, I am still able to see everything Shannon Watts has said to the NRA, even though she has blocked me for existing. To do so, I would use the search: from:shannonrwatts @NRA.

Operator Description Sample Usage
@ Returns tweets mentioning specified account @soderstrom
from: Returns tweets from specified account from:soderstrom
to: Returns tweets to specified account to:soderstrom

Note: The “@” and “to:” operators may seem similar but they are not the same. The “to:” filter is more strict, and will only show tweets where one of the two following conditions is met: the specified account is mentioned first in the tweet (before any other text, e.g. the common practice of “dotting out” account names would hide them from this operator) or the tweet was created by clicking the “reply” button on a tweet by the specified account. In general, it is better to use the “@” operator.

The following allows you to search tweets from a specific twitter list. This is useful searching tweets from elected officials, e.g. all House Democrats without having to re-make the wheel. It also allows you to include more accounts in a single search than you can with the account operators.

Operator Description Sample Usage
list:[username]/[list name] Returns tweets from accounts on the specified list list:@thedemocrats/house-democrats
Operator Description Sample Usage
since: Returns tweets on or after specified date since:2015-09-03
until: Returns tweets on or before specified date until:2015-09-03

Note: To view tweets from a specific day, you would combine both of these operators, e.g. “since:2015-09-03 until:2015-09-03. Dates should be specified as “year-month-day” with four digits for the year, and two each for the month and day.

Operator Description Sample Usage
Excludes tweets matching condition -filter:verified
-near:”Washington, DC” within:10mi

Note: “-http” is extremely useful when you’re looking for tweets about an event that is happening in real-time. It will exclude tweets with links outside of the service. In other words, it allows you to focus on the events from the event, and ignore the links to news stories about the event.

This combines well with location searches.

Search filters enable you to limit the tweets returned based on an array of properties. As with any other search term, adding a dash ahead of the item will exclude the filter. For example, if you only wanted tweets from non-verified users, you would use “-filter:verified” with your search.

Option Description Sample Usage
images Returns tweets with images filter:images
links Returns tweets with links filter:links
media Returns tweets with images or video filter:media
news Returns tweets with links to news items filter:news
verified Returns tweets from verified users filter:verified
videos Returns tweets with video filter:videos
Operator Description Sample Usage
lang: Returns tweets in specified language lang:en

Note: I recommend using the two character language codes, e.g. “lang:en” instead of “lang:English” or “lang:es” instead of “lang:Spanish”. Twitter seems to handle the codes better.

Operator Description Sample Usage
near: Returns tweets near specified location near:”Charlotte, NC”
near:”Mecklenburg County, NC”
near:”North Carolina, USA”
within: Specifies search radius within:15mi
place: Returns tweets based on place id place:3A18810aa5b43e76c7

Note: Only tweets with location data will be displayed. Not all users have location data turned on. Further, I strongly recommend including both parameters, e.g. your search should be near:”Ferguson, MO” within:15mi instead of simply near:”Ferguson, MO”. Finally, you must include the quotation marks around your city, state declaration or the search won’t work properly.

I have included the “place:” operator for completeness, but it’s utility is limited for manual searches.