Announcing the Bitly Social Data APIs

Dear developers and data lovers,

We’re incredibly excited to announce the public release of a new social data API! Every day millions of people shorten, share, and click on links via bitly’s services. This API gives you direct access to the best available content shared by people across all social networks.

There are three kinds of functionality you can now access:

True Realtime Search

Run a query and get back the top URLs and stories for that query right now. Queries can be specific phrases, like “obama”, or filtering criteria, like “stories about food being read by people in Brooklyn”.

Attention Spikes

Search requires that you know what you’re look for, but maybe you just want to see what the world is paying attention to. Our bursts API returns the current phrases that are receiving a burst in attention beyond what we would expect. For example, “giant squid” is bursting today because of this story: Giant Squid Captured on Film. Bursts automatically aggregates multiple articles about the same thing together, which you can see on the realtime story pages.

Metadata about URLs

Finally, we do quite a bit of analysis on the content of each URL. You can now query on a URL basis for keywords, topics, content, language, and location relevance. Generating this kind of metadata is difficult problem faced by anyone who wants to build an application on links. We’ve solved it, now there’s no need for you to!

Full documentation is available on our dev site and in our Python library, and if you’re in New York stay tuned for our API LAUNCH HACKATHON next week in our office. Send your questions, comments and ideas to api@bitly.com!