That being said perhaps people should use g3t better :-).
It is an interesting case study on overloading a channel (in-band administration vs out-of-band) and damaging legitimate traffic. A fix would be to prefix the command keys with an introducer :get <username> or :fav <user> but given the bazillion clients and such doing that would be hard.
Most famous in-band admin hack has to be the +++ syntax for Hayes modems which flipped the mode bit into 'command' mode serial comms mode. It was even patented.
Unlike this case the +++ hack did not really limit legitimate data you could send on Hayes. As far as I remember it had to be preceded and followed by pauses, so transmitting this comment wouldn't trigger it.
I'd love confirmation or denial of that patent thing.
"Hayes had patented this concept in 1985 in patent #4,549,302, the Modem With Improved Escape Sequence With Guard Time Mechanism, generally referred to as the "Hayes '302 patent". Hayes licensed the guard time to other manufacturers for $1 a modem – a charge which competitors derisively termed the "modem tax". A number of manufacturers banded together and introduced the Time Independent Escape Sequence, or TIES, but it was not as robust as Heatherington's system and never became very successful."
get cake and meet me
get me some abc
get this: These were ones that came to mind in 2 minutes.
edit: These lines give my comment a weird tone. Not intended, I just thought of random common examples.
I agree with treetrouble, however, this was a really bad engineering decision. They should have come up with a tweet prefix to mean "command", some symbol that would not ever start a real tweet.
Just as an example let's say "q", followed by a space, followed by the command with the appropriate number of parameters, e.g., "q get username". That would allow otherwise-reasonable tweets that are currently being mis-interpreted ("get better" vs. "q get better").
That's just an example. There are other ways around the problem too without making things too inconvenient on a smartphone user. And sure it's possible someone somewhere will want to write a real tweet that says "q get better", but that's far far less likely than someone somewhere wanting to tweet "get better". And the point is that allowing a non-trivial portion of the tweet-space overlap with the command-space is a bad decision. A trivial overlap (like "q get better") would have been a much better decision.
get him to the greek
get low lyrics
get off my internets
get rich slowly
get away today
get to know you questions
I can just imagine promotional tweets gone wrong, e.g.:
"Get your tickets to Blind Guardian concert! Only 500 left!"
If you see an imperative "get" with an apparent subject, it's probably a topic rather than a subject:
"Paul, get your boots on and get going!"
You are speaking to Paul:
"Get your boots on and get going!"
You use the topic to designate or call attention; it's not the subject of the sentence.
It really is poor engineering, any non-letter prefix would have been good enough.
When I saw that I thought, "Wait, there's actually a manual for this thing?". Of course there is, but I wonder how many people have actually read it. <1%?
The reason that certain tweet content appears to do nothing is that Twitter is interpreting them as commands, according to this article:
The get command will send the latest tweet from the named user to your phone. I've tried some of the other commands listed in that article, and they don't post a tweet. They do, however, have the listed effect. For example, fav accountname does indeed mark the most recent tweet from accountname as a favourite.
It's perhaps useful to remember that'd accountname Some message here will send a direct message to accountname, even if entered in the public tweet box or via another client. This shows that they have a standard text to action parser that works on tweets as they are submitted.
So, to answer your question: No, it's not down to Jack Dorsey's father. It's purely because Twitter is interpreting it as a command. Sorry!
while in High School, Dorsey's father used to spur him to work harder with that exact sentence.
For me, this implies that the creator of Twitter hated his father's trademark phrase, and by extension his father's demands to work harder, so much that Dorsey would explicitly put a ban on the phrase to spite his father.
This follows humanity's tradition of creating myths to explain things we don't understand, but it's exciting to see the mystery phenomena revealed as something created entirely by man.
Wouldn't it just be smart to have the web client bypass the command handler altogether?
I think the number of power users using this feature is probably actually higher than the number of false positives of exactly 2 word tweets where the first is get
For instance, the length of a tweet. I think it's 140 characters so they can fit it in an SMS message along with the username or command.
d, and and dm as well.