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In the 10 code snippets to interact with Twitter by CatsWhoCode, I found an interesting PHP script which can be used to auto-follow people on Twitter, based on a certain term.

The script runs out of the box with no need of PHP knowledge, and all you have to do is edit the $user, $pass and $term variables. Obviously, the first 2 are for your username and password and $term is the term to search in the users timeline and whoever mentions this term, will be followed by you.

Here is the script:

<?php
// Twitter Auto-follow Script by Dave Stevens - http://davestevens.co.uk

$user = "enter_your_twitter_username_here";
$pass = "enter_your_twitter_password_here";

$term = "enter_the_search_term_to_follow_here";

$userApiUrl = "http://twitter.com/statuses/friends.json";

$ch = curl_init($userApiUrl);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_USERPWD, $user.":".$pass);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, 1);

$apiresponse = curl_exec($ch);
curl_close($ch);
$followed = array();

if ($apiresponse) {
$json = json_decode($apiresponse);
if ($json != null) {
foreach ($json as $u) {
$followed[] = $u->name;
}
}
}

$userApiUrl = "http://search.twitter.com/search.json?q=" . $term . "&rpp=100";
$ch = curl_init($userApiUrl);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_USERPWD, $user.":".$pass);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, 1);
$apiresponse = curl_exec($ch);
curl_close($ch);

if ($apiresponse) {
$results = json_decode($apiresponse);
$count = 20;
if ($results != null) {
$resultsArr = $results->results;
if (is_array($resultsArr)) {
foreach ($resultsArr as $result) {
$from_user = $result->from_user;
if (!in_array($from_user,$followed)) {
$ch = curl_init("http://twitter.com/friendships/create/" . $from_user . ".json");
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_USERPWD, $user.":".$pass);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_POST, 1);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_POSTFIELDS,"follow=true");
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, 1);
$apiresponse = curl_exec($ch);

if ($apiresponse) {
$response = json_decode($apiresponse);
if ($response != null) {
if (property_exists($response,"following")) {
if ($response->following === true) {
echo "Now following " . $response->screen_name . "\n";
} else {
echo "Couldn't follow " . $response->screen_name . "\n";
}
} else {
echo "Follow limit exceeded, skipped " . $from_user . "\n";
}
}
}
curl_close($ch);
} else {
echo "Already following " . $from_user . "\n";
}
}
}
}
}
?>



All you have to do is copy/paste the code to a text file, rename it to .php and upload it to a web hosting which supports PHP. Then just to go the web address where you uploaded the script and it will run, doing what it's supposed to. Alternatively, you could set up a PHP server on your own computer and run it there.
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