The company is going through difficult times
After months of expectation from its user base, Twitter has finally rolled out an important series of changes to its social media platform. The microblogging site and app have gotten rid of constraints that have trumped its 140-character limit per tweet for a long time.
The announcement comes amidst a difficult period for Twitter, as the company sees movement within its platform go stale despite adding a myriad of new features in recent times. Moreover, Twitter is also in somewhat of a financial struggle, since the price of its stock shares has plummeted to half its value in this past year alone.
The social media giant is one of the most popular windows to the online world, adopted by the general public, celebrities, media outlets, brands, and more. It is the go-to site on the Internet for breaking news and live discussion. The new rules will allow users to pack more content in a limited space of text.
Twitter needs a revamp
While the enforcement of the latest Twitter rules themselves is new, the analysis of user interaction and background work to make them possible has been long ongoing.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey expressed back in January the need to keep the 140 characters, but also the willingness to be flexible about it.
“It’s become a beautiful constraint, and I love it! It inspires creativity and brevity. And a sense of speed. We will never lose that feeling,” Dorsey said.
Then in May, the company announced they would implement new changes on the platform soon on its official blog. More specifically, Twitter will no longer take replies, media attachments, and usernames into account when tallying the 140 characters per tweet.
How can you say more with 140 characters?
Say more about what's happening! Rolling out now: photos, videos, GIFs, polls, and Quote Tweets no longer count toward your 140 characters. pic.twitter.com/I9pUC0NdZC
— Twitter (@twitter) September 19, 2016
First off, Twitter is reported to be experimenting with a select pool of users the exclusion of usernames out of the 140 characters in replies. Some users may be able to send longer messages now since the username of the recipient will not count as tweet characters.
This feature will reportedly make it to the whole social media site in time, but for now, it remains restricted. A general feature as of Monday will be the elimination of media attachment links as part of the 140-character limit.
That change represents a huge step forward: no more using link shorteners or limiting comments to acronyms or emojis. Users can now attach photos, videos, GIFs, polls, Periscope videos and more without them taking characters out of the tweet messages.
Finally, those using Twitter can now quote others without the entirety of that tweet counting as part of the 140 characters either. However, if they include a link to the tweet, it will count as it is not taken as a media attachment.