Kinsa | Pixels + Logic Blog

Find Twitter Following Users Who Do Not Belong To a List

A Twitter user management strategy is to group users into list. However, if a user isn't immediately assigned to a list or lists when initially following them, there is no way in the Twitter user interface to determine who is or is not on a list at a later time.

The following code snippet makes use of a Python wrapper around the Twitter API to create a list of users an account is following who have not been added to a list. Assuming the number of users who don't yet belong to a list is manageable, they can then be manually added to the appropriate list (here the code is outputting a screen name which can be queried in-browser to manually call up the user's page and use the tools on the page to add them to a list). The information returned could just as well be used to programmatically add them to an existing list or make a new list depending on the specific use case.

"""Print the usernames of Users that we are following who have not been assigned
to a list.

Prints nothing if everyone is on a list.

import twitter  #

api = twitter.Api(
    consumer_key='',  # Fill in values per

# the twitter.models.User class does not by default accommodate comparison of
# objects, we can assume that the attribute will always be unique per
# and, as such,
# use the attribute for comparison between User class instances
def __eq__(self, other):
    if isinstance(other, self.__class__):
        return ==
        return False

def __ne__(self, other):
    return not self.__eq__(other)

# override the inherited __eq__() and __ne__() methods of twitter.models.User
twitter.models.User.__eq__ = __eq__
twitter.models.User.__ne__ = __ne__

# get collections of everyone we are following and our lists
users = api.GetFriends()
lists = api.GetLists()

# create an empty Python list to store a succinct list of User objects
# belonging to any and all lists
listed_members = []

# to begin with, listed_members will be a list of lists of members from each
# Twitter list i.e. [[Users from the 1st Twitter list], [Users from the 2nd]]
[listed_members.append(api.GetListMembers( for
     list in lists]

# flatten the list of member lists down to one large list of User objects
# i.e. [User1, User2, User3]
flat_member_list = [item for sublist in listed_members for item in sublist]

# iterate over the list of followers and check membership, printing the
# User.screen_name if membership does not exist
for user in users:
    if user not in flat_member_list:


Email us at