Published: Wed, November 08, 2017
Science | By Eileen Rhodes

Twitter Erupts Over 280 Character Tweets: '140 Characters Closer to Armageddon'

Twitter Erupts Over 280 Character Tweets: '140 Characters Closer to Armageddon'

The length is twice as long as Twitter's current 140-character limit. Some Twitterati think brevity is the soul of the service and worry the longer form will ruin what's special about it.

Twitter Inc. is ending its 140-character limit - and giving almost everyone 280 characters. Others just want an edit button already.

"We saw when people needed to use more than 140 characters, they tweeted more easily and more often".

It says during the test many people tweeted the full 280 limit because it was new and novel, but soon after this people's behaviour normalised. This is helpful for English-speaking users, and as a caveat, posts in Japanese, Korean, or Chinese, which have historically never struggled with the amount of writing space, will remain at the 140-character limit.

Say goodbye to 140 characters and the countdown that used to appear next to your working tweets, it's all about 280 characters and a slowly filling circle now. With 280 characters, only one percent of tweets hit the limit.

More news: Facebook Messenger payments roll out for the UK

"This reflects the challenge of fitting a thought into a tweet, often resulting in lots of time spent editing and even at times abandoning tweets before sending".

Before the tests - which were limited to a few users, but easy to participate in thanks to third-party tools - roughly 9 percent of tweets ran right up against the 140-character limit.

But, Twitter said, while obnoxiously long messages weren't flooding users' timelines, the more verbose tweets did let people fire off messages faster and, the company believes, with less agonizing over each message.

The character change could also help spur user growth, an important issue for investors wanting Twitter to follow the trajectory of social media giants such as Facebook and Instagram. "But that didn't happen. for reference, in the timeline, Tweets with an image or poll usually take up more space than a 190 character Tweet".

In a blog post, Twitter product manager, Aliza Rosen, shared the news about the bump to 280 characters for all along with some background information on what the company found during the testing period and why it's moving forward with the change. It was a temporary effect and didn't last long.

Like this: