Less muta­ble, more mobile. The role of Twit­ter apps in the history of the retweet button (2019)

Peer reviewed / Buchveröffentlichung


This article aims to enhance our understanding of Twitter’s development from an aggregation of ‘microblogs’ into an infrastructure for the circulation of information by proposing a history of the retweet beforeTwitter’s introduction of a retweet button in November 2009. It argues, although every innovation in thishistory can be dissolved into chains of translation, it is helpful to differentiate between the retweet’sformalization, unitization and narrativization. Among other actors, apps played a crucial role in this processof transforming Tweets into a less mutable and more mobile item, able to circulate as originals on theplatform Twitter, but also in a larger infrastructure. As a result, apps appear in this history as co-producersof an infrastructure.


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Paßmann, Johannes (2019): „Less mutable, more mobile. The role of Twitter apps in the history of
the retweet button“, in: Computational Culture 7 (1), http://computationalculture.net/less-mutable-more-mobile-the-role-of-twitter-apps-in-the-history-of-the-retweet-button/, S. 1–28.