Twitter, LinkedIn link up on business-focused social networking

Deal enables users to post updates to both social networking sites simultaneously

Twitter and LinkedIn users will now be able to post status updates to the two Web sites simultaneously, in a deal aimed at enhancing professional use of Twitter and expanding the audience for the business-focused social network LinkedIn.

"The business use case of Twitter is turning out to be very important," Twitter co-founder Biz Stone says in a video announcing the partnership. "More and more people are finding the persona they create for themselves on the Web is part of their resume, in many ways."

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There are already similar integrations between Twitter and Facebook, allowing users to post simultaneously to the two sites.

LinkedIn users can get started by clicking the Twitter icon on the LinkedIn home page, or go to their profiles and click on an option to add a Twitter account. While on Twitter, users can choose to share all tweets in their LinkedIn status, or only selected ones by typing hash tags #IN or #LI.

"The idea is simple: When you set your status on LinkedIn you can now tweet it as well, amplifying it to your followers and real-time search services like Twitter Search and Bing," writes LinkedIn co-founder Allen Blue. "And when you tweet, you can send that message to your LinkedIn connections as well, from any Twitter service or tool."

LinkedIn is a more private social network than Twitter, with connection requests requiring confirmation by both parties. Integrating the two makes it easier for LinkedIn users to reach a wider audience when they want to, such as when they have an important question or job inquiry.

"You want the widest possible distribution … because you want your question answered at all costs," Stone says.

Twitter-like status updates can help users find new jobs or kick off new projects, LinkedIn officials say.

"It's the integration of the business side of the tweets and Twitter with the business ecosystem of LinkedIn that make the two work together," says LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman.

The partnership was announced Monday and the new features will be rolled out gradually this week.

This story, "Twitter, LinkedIn link up on business-focused social networking" was originally published by Network World.

Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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