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Create a twitter bot that follows a list and retweets tweets that match a regex pattern.


A Twitter API 1.1 script to make a Twitter bot that retweets tweets that contain words in a RegEx. Built off of RegEx Tweet,

It currently powers @YourRepsOnGuns, retweeting members of congress when they tweet about firearms and related words. Check out that implementation for a more advanced example.

We originally made this project when we were working at The Daily Beast and compiling every member of congress's stance on gun control for This Is Your Rep On Guns. Read more about that project and the origins of this bot here.


npm install mockingjay


This example includes the optional inclusion of a bot_name see below for when you want to include that. Otherwise, you can leave it blank or omit it entirely.

var mockingjay = require('mockingjay');
var opts = {
  list_owner: "cspan",
  list_name: "members-of-congress",
  count: 200,
  regex: "(Obamacare|Obama)",
  credentials: {
    consumer_key:         ...,
    consumer_secret:      ...,
    access_token:         ...,
    access_token_secret:  ...
  bot_name: "obamacare-bot"
mockingjay.retweet(opts, function(err, result){
  if (!err){
      "retweeted_matches": true,
      "since_last": 20,
      "matching": 5


If you have multiple instances of Mockingjay running on the same machine, you'll want to include a bot_name in the config file. Mockingjay only checks new tweets since the last time it ran. It does this by saving the id of the most latest tweet in a file at src/last-ids/<bot-name>-last-id.json. Specifying a name will make sure that your script will only check for the last time it ran as opposed to the last time some other script ran.


This package is meant to be run on a cron. Here's an example setup that runs it on the 1s

1,11,21,31,41,51 * * * * /usr/bin/node /home/ubuntu/tasks/botname/bot.js

Tweets that are retweets

If someone in your list retweeted a tweet that matches your criteria, e.g. you're following senators using the word "gun" and a senator retweets an NRA tweet about "guns", then Mockingjay will send out a tweet that looks like this:

.@<person-on-your-tracking-list> retweeted @<person-they-retweeted>: <url-of-original-tweet>

If a Mockingjay bot were retweeting @csvsoundsystem whenever they mentioned "big data", which someone should make by the way, it would look like this:

@csvsoundsystem retweeted @lifewinning: 


result returns an object. If retweeted_matches is true, it found new matching tweets and retweeted them without error. If everything went well but it didn't find any matches, status is false. since_last are the number of new tweets in that list since last it checked. matching is the number of new and matching tweets since last it checked.