Twitter and Instagram have long been frenemies—in constant competition, but forever bound by their social circles. I love them both, so when Twitter went all 15-year-old girl on Instagram and blocked users’ photos from being displayed in Twitter feeds, I just sighed, accepted it, and moved on.
Now, however, a cool new service has cut through the drama to unite these two frenemies and let you post your precious Instagrams on Twitter.
The unifying service is called IFTTT. IFTTT — which stands for “If This Then That” — allows you to program personal “recipes” to provide workarounds and simplify your tangled tech life. In this case, S.F. Chronicle reporter Caleb Garling used the service to create a recipe that allows Instagram users to post photos directly in their Twitter feeds.
Previously, Twitter translated all Instagram posts into links, which required users to click a link to a separate page to view the photo. (I know, the horror! But still, annoying for the Twitter power user.) Now, however, you can automatically trade that outbound link for an inline Twitpic photo.
Here’s how you do it:
1. Create an IFTTT (pronounced like “gift” without the “g”) account here. It takes, like, three seconds.
2. Once you’ve signed up, go here, which is where Garling’s special Twitstagram recipe lives on the site.
3. Click the “Use Recipe” button at the bottom of the page.
4. Sync both your Twitter and Instagram accounts with your new IFTTT account. Click the “Activate” button to the right of the Instagram icon to start the process.
5. A window will pop up. Log into your Instagram account and allow IFTTT to access your information.
6. Repeat that step with your Twitter account.
7. Click “Use Recipe” again. IFTTT will then bring you to a confirmation page. It takes about 15 minutes to activate. Go meditate, make a sandwich, or stare at the wall. The choice, and the way you spend your time on earth, is yours.
8. Now post a photo to Instagram. Ignore the option to share it on Twitter, just skip that part. IFTTT has taken care of that for you.
Check back on Twitter. Voila, you’ve tweeted your Instagram photo!