Tweet to Unlock with jQuery & PHP

Everyone knows how important role Twitter can play to bring new visitors to your site, and Tweet to unlock can only amplify the whole thing by requiring visitors to Tweet about your page in order to unlock the downloadable items or premium content. In this tutorial article, let's create simple "Tweet to Unlock" feature for your web page using jQuery Ajax and PHP.
Events are triggered when user successfully tweets the page, to capture some information from Twitter, we can add a "listeners" to the actions users perform in Web Intents. Once we know the user has Twitted the page, we can make an Ajax request to a PHP file, which will respond to this request  by sending the unlocked data to user browser. Here's complete code example of a page which has some content to be unlocked by Twitting.
HTML
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<?php session_start(); //start PHP session session_regenerate_id(true); //Generated new session id ?> <!DOCTYPE html> <html> <head> <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8" /> <title>Test Project</title> <script type="text/javascript" src="js/jquery.js"></script> </head> <body> <div id="tweet_content" class="locked_ct"><h5>Tweet to Unlock this Content</h5> <a href="https://twitter.com/share" class="twitter-share-button" data-via="saaraan">Tweet</a> </div> <script type="text/javascript" src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script> <script type="text/javascript"> //All event bindings must be wrapped within callback function twttr.ready(function (twttr) { //######## trigger when the user publishes his tweet twttr.events.bind('tweet', function(event) { /* To make locked items little more private, let's send our base64 encoded session key which will work as key in send_resources.php to acquire locked items. */ var data = {unlock_key : '<?php echo base64_encode(session_id());?>'}; //Load data from the server using a HTTP POST request. $.post("send_resources.php", data, function(data) { //Append unlocked content into div element $('#tweet_content').html(data); }).error(function(xhr, ajaxOptions, thrownError) { //Output any errors from server. alert( thrownError); }); }); }); </script> </body> </html>

PHP Ajax Response

When user Tweets the page successfully, an Ajax request is made to PHP file send_resources.php, and the server returns this HTML snippet, which contains unlocked item or anything goes wrong HTTP error is sent to browser.
PHP
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<?php session_start(); // session start //retrive base64 encoded post variable and compare it with session id. if (isset($_POST["unlock_key"]) && base64_decode($_POST["unlock_key"])===session_id()) { //user unlocked item by tweeting. echo "Congratulations! You just unlocked this text by Tweeting!"; }else{ //Output HTTP errors header('HTTP/1.1 500 Oops! something went wrong...'); exit(); } ?>

Conclusion

This is the example usage of Twitter Web Intents, and I found there are some limitations to what you can achieve with it, but I am sure it will serve the purpose and if there's more to it let's dig and share, good luck!

Demo

The link to downloadable sample code is locked, Please Tweet this page to unlock it.
Tweet to Unlock Download
  • Your blog and contents are awesome! I have already bookmarked it and will check back regularly. Keep up the good work! :)
  • great script, your site are bookmarked maybe one facebook like to unlock Facebook is popular in my country, Brazil
  • What does this mean? Anyone who’s written a server-based application that talks to Twitter via its API will need to spend some time upgrading it. In this article, we’ll focus on automated back-end type applications, such as an app that automatically tweets when a new deal is available on a website, a sports score tweeter, or other similar apps. In part II, we’ll have a look at the more traditional OAuth model, where individual users authorize your app to access their Twitter accounts via a web interface.
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