Just another bunch of stuff pouring out of some guy's head

WordPress Twitter widget

I’ve been wanting to dip my foot into WordPress widgets for while so when I noticed Twitter didn’t have a WordPress widget I decided to write one. Of course, I’m not the first.

The widget makes use of Twitter’s Javascript ‘badge’. It’s not sophisticated and there’s only 3 configuration options: Twitter account name, widget title and number of updates you want shown.

It saves you having to paste the code into your page and gives you a nice interface for changing the display options.


  1. Download the WordPress Twitter widget from WordPress.org.
  2. Unzip the downloaded file and upload/copy ‘twitter-widget.php‘ to your ‘/wp-content/plugins/widgets/‘ folder.
  3. Activate the ‘Twitter‘ plugin in your WordPress’ Plugins admin.
  4. Drag the ‘Twitter‘ widget to the sidebar in your WordPress’ Widgets admin.
  5. Configure the widget with your Twitter account name, widget title and number of updates you want shown.
  6. Save Changes and you’re done!

Thanks go to Mike Jolley for his handy widget tutorial.

Update – 2007-12-19

The widget is now hosted on WordPress.org. Thanks guys.

Also gotta send some love to the guys (and girls) that write Subversion, Aptana and Subclipse.


Just to let you know that this works on WP 2.3.1 . . . any way to get the URLs to link?

If it also could handle long URLs so they didn’t go out of the margin in my sidebar, like wrap them around, this plug in would be brilliant.


Works for me on 2.4-bleeding (latest Subversion checkout). Just a note–you don’t have to copy the PHP file into wp-content/plugins/widgets; just extracting it into the plugins folder made it show up in the admin interface, and I was able to add it to the sidebar from there.

Thanks for the compatability updates guys. Appreciate it.

[…] Plugin Homepage […]

Is there any way to install this without using widgets? I’m not sure what the code is supposed to be to insert it into the sidebar.php

If you want to edit sidebar.php yourself you can get the HTML from Twitter’s “badges” page at http://twitter.com/badges/html

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It also works on 2.5 by the way. Nice plugin :)

Thanks Ray.

I’ll have to upgrade now 😉

hi. Thanks for plugin



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The widget isn’t currently working. Would it have to do with the Twitter API?

Yes, the widget relies on the API being available. Note, however, that javascript must also be enabled on your browser.

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Great widget, thanks!!
Supereasy to install….

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Hey there,

Thanks for the plugin.

Can you tell me how to customize the look and feel of this widget, i want to change the li details of this.

You can customize the addon by adding CSS to your theme’s CSS.

The content is built with javascript so to view the generated code you can use either Firefox’s “Web Developer” toolbar function “View Generated Source” or the Mouseover DOM Inspector.

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Hi Sean,
Current Twitter link for html badges is:

Best wishes, Mitch

Thanks Mitch.

Maybe updating the link in the docs will prompt me to complete the changes to the widget I’ve been working on for ages 😉

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Hi Sean. Thanks for the widget. We are getting an error “Undeclared entity warning at line 275, column 1″ when we add the widget. When we remove the twitter widget, it disappears. Any ideas what the problem may be?

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What a great simple plug perfect!

Is there a way to put the widget is several sidebars? The add button disappears when added to a sidebar.

Not as far as I know. But then again, my blog design only has one sidebar.

If you copy the HTML that is generated by the javascript you can place that HTML anywhere and you’ll end up with two badges. You need something like Web Developer toolbar for Firefox to view generated source.

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I like your Twitter Widget plugin, but it ‘delay’ the rendering of my page. I have a sugestion. Could you put the ‘scripts’ at the end of the body? If you want i can send to you my own modifications.

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Thanks great Plugin.
Thanks for sharing.

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Hi there! Thanks for the widget. :) It’s great, except for one little thing. When I upgraded to the latest version of WP, it stopped working. It now takes a while to try to load my updates from twitter, but eventually leaves me with an empty box. It’s been like this for a couple of weeks now. Any idea why this might be happening?


The widget should work fine with WP2.8. It’s sounds like you’re seeing a high load on the Twitter site. This can make your tweets appear slowly or not all as the tweets are pulled directly from Twitter’s servers.

Works great, thank you, Sean! One request (possibly already voiced by others): can we add a “Follow me” link right after or instead of “4 minutes ago”? That would be awesome.

Sorry Alex, the content of the widget is decided by Twitter.

Your wordpress plugin page says it’s possible to use two instances of this widget? How? Once used, the widget is unavailable for a second account.

Where does it say that? My reply to Jonas on a similar question is “Not as far as I know.”

Great widget! Still working under WP 2.8.2 but I can’t figure out how to modify the CSS to have my own background. Which section do I do that in?

I’m below a CSS novice so any help you could give me would be appreciated!

The widget is in a div id=”twitter_div”. Apply your CSS to this object.

eg. #twitter_div {background-color:yellow;}

Thanks! That did the trick for me. Now I just have to adjust the text position and my graphic.

I appreciate the quick response!

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Hello, I added 5 lines of code to make this plugin more optimized (loads after the blog is done).

See http://www.anders.bennehag.com/blog/2009/twitter-widget-modified-for-speed/ for more information.

Sean, if you’re reading, I think you should add these 5 lines to your code as well.

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is it possible for the existing widget to display more than one twitter feed?

add on to that question…when I say twitter feed, I mean tweets from different accounts…sorry

No, it can only display one feed.

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hi, nice plugin, thanks you very much..

Hallo und schönes fest erst einmal :-)

Habe mal einen Link zu deiner Seite gesetzt da du dich ja mit Twitter beschĂ€ftigst Oki…

Bis dann lars

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Thanks for an easy to use widget. This is the third Twitter I have tried and it actually works and displays with my theme fine. Just upgrated to WP 2.9.1 and it looks great.

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Just installed it to my StudioPress word theme and works great. Thanks for making it so easy.

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Color me stupid, but I cannot get this to show up in my widgets. I am running 2.9.1 with News Magazine Theme 640 1.6.8 by antisocialmediallc.com and just getting it configured. I had to create a [widgets] folder where indicated as there was not one. It did not show up in the widgets section, so I uploaded to [plugins] and activated, but still cannot see it. Any thoughts to help out a moron?


Jeff, look in the source code of any page the widget is supposed to appear on for the string “twitter_div”. This means the widget is installed OK. The display of tweets relies on Javascript and if the tweets aren’t appearing it’s *probably* because there’s some other (poorly written) Javascript on your page that’s conflicting.

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Hello Sean, The widget is perfect. But may i know how can i move the timestamp to a new line everytime ? where can i do that in php ? please help me.

Hi Sean,

I’m using your widget on http://www.sapnamagazine.com. It’s great! Two questions:

(1) how do I edit the code so that a profile pic thumbnail is shown at the top?

(2) how can I delete that gray bar from the top? that’s my widget header background, but I don’t want this widget to have a title (since I added another text widget on top as my title).

Thanks in advance!! loving the widget.

Short answer: you can’t. The javascript that builds the feed is hosted on twitter.com. You can’t edit it.

Long answer: maybe. This is the javascript that builds the feed. You could copy it, edit it to taste and host it on your own site, copyright/legal issues permitting.

1. The article already has a link to a widget editing tutorial.

2. Any visual styling the widget has is taken from your blog’s theme. You’ll have to edit that. Note, there are already replies in these comments about editing CSS.

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Great widget! I have on 2.9.1 and it’s working perfectly. One question though.

Is there a way to edit this widget so it will cache the tweets and only update the list at a set interval (half hour, hour, day, etc)? I have this on my site, but since Twitter’s connection is spotty, it can cause ungodly load times. And if Twitter is down, my page breaks completely. Thanks!

There are other Twitter WP plugins that cache tweets. I suggest looking at one of those.

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Hey Sean, Just grabbed WP Twitter Widget and … so far, so good. One small problem: URL’s that are wider than the box don’t wrap around. I’m looking into how this might be fixed in code and will let you know.
In meantime, check out my blog: http://www.dalecoweb.com/thetroubleshooter.
Cheers, Dale

Hehe, you’re not the first to anguish over URL wrapping. I prefer to use bit.ly.

This link has an interesting answer to the issue.

I activated the widget, but only Sean’s tweets are showing just like above. How do I change this. I know nothing about HTML

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Alex, you have to enter your Twitter username into the widget’s settings.

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Hi there,
Nice widget, however I’d like a little bit of space between each tweet posted. Is there a way in either the settings, or exactly what file and what code/where do I need to make the change? I noticed a nice break between the tweets on this page.

There is no styling present in the widget. It takes all the styling from the CSS already present in your WP install. Please see my replies to other comments for help with this.

This is a great widget, however as Twitter is getting more and more popular I’ve noticed that there is a big lag on page load when the widget attempts to contact Twitter. It would be great to see an option to enable a cache, so that the last Tweet could be from a cache rather than a call to the Twitter server.

Once again, thanks for the widget.

Thanks Adam. Certainly Twitter’s performance varies but there are many other WP Twitter plugins and some that do caching. You should investigate those.

I have add twitter plugin in wordpress but i active the plugin there is an error

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Thanks for a quick and hassle free widget! Love it.

Thanks for the Widget! Was super easy to install and works great…

Thanks for the comments guys. Glad the widget serves your needs.

The widget code is very simple. If you’re getting an error it’s probably conflicting JavaScript from something else in your site.

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My Twitter feed only shows up if I am logged into WordPress. Otherwise it says “No public Twitter messages” Any advice?


Thank you plugin work really fine.

Ich habe das plugin installiert, habe aber Probleme mit den Umlauten, die es ja in der deutschen Sprache gibt. Kann man da was Àndern?

Great widget, works great, but I have one issue. What is controlling the color of the text of the actual Twitter post that shows up on the sidebar in your widget. The Widget Title and the time stamp on the twitter post show up fine using the website colors, but the twitter post text does not. It’s a problem becuase it is black (or very dark) and I have it over a dark background. Any way to change the text colors of the Twitter post that is taken from Twitter?

Never mind. Figured it out based on an earlier post. in the CSS, added,
#twitter_div {color:#ffffff;}

Well done.

Hi there,

I successfully use your twitter widget on a blog of my own. However I recently started a new web site which host two domain name with different language content under the same wordpress instance.

If I use your widget, because the widget settings are shared between the domain, I will be able to show only one timeline.

What I want, instead, is displaying a twitter account for the english language and one for the second language.

The only chance I have is to manually plug the widget coding the widget into the sidebar, or eventually add a php variable which will influence the feed retrieving process.

Is this possible? Can you provide me some hints?

Many thanks

I’ve been using your twitter widget for a while and thought it was working great until I recently began retweeting often. Retweets don’t seem to show up on the widget, yet they take up a blank space. Is there a fix for this so it will either display retweets or skip them entirely?


Aaron, my best guess would be that the CSS of your site is styling the text of the retweets the same colour as the background of the page. Try a “control a” (select all) on that page and see if the retweets appear when reversed out.

I’m following a bunch of different news sources in Twitter. Is there a way to use this plugin on my blog to display the news feed from these sources? I’m not posting any updates myself yet.

@Brian: No. It only shows your tweets.

the widget seems to not work since i upgraded – any idea if there is a fix?

@joey, I can confirm that it works on 3.0.1. What version of WP are your running?

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Is it possible to have the plugin function on certain pages, and not on others?

@steve, it might be but this would be a function of WordPress, ie. different layouts for different pages. I have no idea if WP can even do that.

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Hey. This looks great. Can you help me figure out why the words get cut off on my site? Thanks.

Hi guys,

Great widget. But I am throwing IP away. After the tweets fall off, they are gone? Is there a way to ensure they all go into categories to be enjoyed forever and ever? Thanks. Bill

@Chip, not sure what you’re referring to. Example?

@bill. The widget doesn’t “keep” anything so it’s not possible for it to “throw away” anything. It’s merely a view of Twitter, provided by Twitter.

I would like to add the twitter logo which when clicked goes to my profile, how can I do this mate?

By the way this is a kick-ass widget, just what I was looking for!

@Chris, Thanks, glad it works for you. The code of the widget is generated by Twitter’s javascript so inserting an element into it is tricky. You could probably add the Twitter logo with CSS but not the link.


I’m wondering if you know how to implement hover cards for this code. I have hovercards for my site entries and it looks a bit inconsistent if I don’t have them in the twitter box.



@Elizabeth, sorry, I don’t. The closest I’ve gotten to Javascript development is copy-and-pasting “history.go(-1)“.

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Hi, thanx for your plugin,
I have more than 1 sidebar, and I wold to put the twitter widget in all, but I have just 1 to put..do you know how can I do?

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I don’t now why, only can put one twitt widget. I need use 5 at least.
What i need change o how can i fix this?

Is it possible to move the ‘XX days/hours ago’ to a new line?
Thank you.

Never mind. I just figured it out myself. Simply add the following to style.css:
.widget span {display:block;}

Anyway thanks for the nice plugin.. Great job!

@Serge Thanks. I’m glad it’s useful for you.

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Hi Sean,

I believe you are the author of the Twitter Widget. I have a question. My client would like to see both Twitter and FB posts on his websites. I set him up with a ping account that allows him to post on both Twitter and FB at the same time. If I use your widget will it show posts from both apps?
Thanks in advance,
Miriam Freer

@Miriam, the widget only connects to Twitter’s feed.

I understand, but the ping account posts to both FB and Twitter so whatever the client posts, posts both places. So if it connects to Twitter’s feed that’s fine because all FB posts are there as well.


BTW do you have any slide show widgets? Or one that you would recommend? I just want one to show in a side bar samples of my work.
Thanks, the newbie nerd,

@Miriam, try wordpress.org/extend/plugins/ for plugins.

Thank you will do, I’ll let you know how I make out.


Hi Sean, i have one question…
How do call the variable “$widget” to the Twitter widget plugin???
Thanks, Eber

ops example: the_widget(‘What’s name of plugin of here???’);

[…] surely lots of wordpress widgets that allow you to show some twitter posts on you blog, but I found Twitter Widget one of the best of them. You only need to fill in your twitter username and the number of posts […]

HI great widget! But I have just noticed it is not working in Internet Explorer but not in FireFox. Why do you think this is?

@Eber, sorry I’m not sure what you’re asking. What are you trying to do?

@Nikki, perhaps Javascript is either turned off or there is a Javascript incompatability. Or maybe it’s being blocked by an AdBlocker. Works in both FF3.6 and IE9 for me.

Thanks guys for share.i like this plugin :-)

Excelent plugin, I will try it now

Is there a way to add a second Twitter feed? On our show, both hosts have a Twitter account, and once I add one host’s feed to the sidebar, the widget disappears from the available widgets. I appreciate your response in advance. RB


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Is there any way to change the twitter widget plugin to say “1 week”, rather than “1 weeks”?

I look forward to hearing from you


No Dom, there isn’t. The tweet code is pulled from Twitter and not part of the widget.

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