So. Twitter did a thing. Shocking, I know. Unless you’ve been on one of those overhyped “off the grid” sabbaticals where you “unplug” from the internet (idgi), you probably heard the big news that came out earlier this week.
Following their typical M.O., Twitter introduced a new feature that no one really asked for: longer tweets. Breaking the mold that set them apart from the very beginning, Twitter is doing away with the standard 140 character limit we’ve all come to love/hate/embrace over the years.
Can’t fit your Tweet into 140 characters?
We’re trying something new with a small group, and increasing the character limit to 280! Excited about the possibilities? Read our blog to find out how it all adds up. https://t.co/C6hjsB9nbL
— Twitter (@Twitter) September 26, 2017
WHAT IN THE HECK?!? 280?!? WDYM???
It means your tweets can be longer now, duh. What kind of stupid question is that?
A better question would be, “Will my timeline start looking more like Facebook?” The answer is… most likely not. While the character limit has doubled in length, it’s still pretty restrictive. Even with the extended character limit, you still don’t have the room to write a whole blog style post like you can on other platforms. Twitter will continue to be a place where you can find the most important pieces of information at a fast pace.
WELL GOLLY ISN’T THAT NEAT! HOW DO I GET THIS LOVELY FEATURE?
Twitter started rolling out the 280 to select users shortly after the announcement on Tuesday. No word yet on when the feature will be extended to all users, as this is still being posited as a test for the time being. In the past, Twitter has completely pulled features that received overwhelming criticism, but with a change this significant it seems unlikely that they would do that in this instance.
Thankfully hope isn’t all lost if Twitter didn’t deem you special enough to receive the 280. If you’re like me and couldn’t pass up the opportunity to make jokes about the new feature, you probably force enabled it using some clever hacks created by people much more intelligent than myself. Check it out for yourself by following the instructions here or here.
DOPE. SO HOW SHOULD BRANDS USE THIS?
- Honestly, don’t. (jk)
- But for real, anything you post should still be limited to 140 characters (roughly). Twitter is a rapidly moving machine, just like all social media is, so your copy needs to be able to capture your audience’s attention and deliver your message in a succinct manner. Don’t make your audience have to work to consume your content. Eye catching, to the point content will still prevail even in a 280 world.
- If you have a fun brand voice and want to participate in a joke that takes advantage of the extended character limit (like using ASCII art for example), go for it. There are definitely ways to use this new feature in fun and creative ways. Seeing how brands and users explore this space in the weeks to come will be very interesting.
ARE YOU DONE YET?
Almost, I promise. In summation, this change really isn’t that big of a deal. Most people will continue to use Twitter in the same fashion they always have, with the exception of being able to type out the full form of “your” or “you’re” instead of “ur.” While the days of the short-form tweet may be gone for now, Twitter still has a deathgrip on “free speech” and the integrity of the “in the moment” tweet (AKA no editing), so some shades of OG Twitter will continue to live on for a while longer (for better or worse).
I MADE IT THIS FAR, NOW SHOW ME THE JOKES.
140 character twitter vs 280 character twitter pic.twitter.com/6FHyHgGSxQ
— Laura Waddell (@lauraewaddell) September 27, 2017
She’s never looked more beautiful. *wipes tear*
Think about Jack's mentions today. It's amazing that this website is probably a nightmare even for its founder. You can't make this shit up
— Alana Hope Levinson (@alanalevinson) September 27, 2017
me after reading two tweets that were longer than 140 characters pic.twitter.com/tfWop3Mtzv
— tired (@ugsadkid) September 27, 2017
I still haven’t read one tbh.
139 characters pic.twitter.com/WkfdXL8oLh
— Caitlin Kelly (@caitlin__kelly) September 26, 2017
Proof that the 280 isn’t necessary.
7 characters pic.twitter.com/aPVCZTkAGW
— leon 🐣 (@leyawn) September 27, 2017
Honestly this would have worked, too.
“can’t wait for serial abusers to have so many more words to use to tell women and minorities to kill themselves” — zero twitter users
— jeff meltz lol (@thecultureofme) September 26, 2017
The new feature opened up a lot of conversation about the harassment and abuse issue that Twitter has historically done a poor job of addressing.
— andrea grimes (@andreagrimes) September 27, 2017
Utilizing all 280 characters to call out Twitter on their bs.
USERS: you're alienating the people who actually use your product
TWITTER: likes are now florps
TWITTER: timeline goes sideways
— actioncookbook (@actioncookbook) January 5, 2016
TBT to this tweet from last year that addresses Twitter’s tendency to dodge hard questions and instead give users features they don’t really want or need.
you know i had to do it to em
— 𐡍ߠߛߋߕ⁰⁰ (@NO_BOOT_DEVICE) September 27, 2017
Ok sorry back to the jokes. ASCII art has made a strong comeback with this update.
OH HOLY SHIT. I figured out what we should do with the new 140 characters.
´•._.•´¯`•._.•´Forum Signatures Are Back Baby`•._.•´¯`•.¸¸.•´
— austin walker (@austin_walker) September 26, 2017
The possibilities are endless.
but what will 280 characs mean for https://t.co/v6cHMyexJy screenshots
— LW (@lindseyweber) September 26, 2017
Our thoughts are with the creators of the Notes app as they deal with the inevitable Wholebrity migration to Twitter for all their unfortunate public announcements.
Daenerys of the House Targaryen, the First of Her Name, The Unburnt, Queen of the Andals, the Rhoynar and the First Men, Queen of Meereen, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Protector of the Realm, Lady Regnant of the Seven Kingdoms, Breaker of Chains and Mother of Dragons.
— Fey (@feytastic) September 27, 2017
Finally there’s enough room to write out Dany’s full name.
"I watch Rick and Morty." The class is shocked at my overwhelming intelligence. "…how? I can't even understand its sheer nuance and subtlety." "Well… WUBBA LUBBA DUB DUB!" One student laughs, and I turn to see who the fellow genius is. It's none other than Albert Einstein.
— Raggy (@IuIIed) September 27, 2017
Copypasta now has a new home on Twitter.
it’s wednesday 📆📆 that means it’s 👏👏 hump day 🐪🐪🐪 but you 👍 are my friend 👫 so I will never ❌❌❌ hump 🐪 you ‼‼ (unless you want me to ✅✅🐪🐪) send 📲 this to 10 friends 👫👫 who you 👏👏 want to hump 🐪🐪‼‼
— "vegyn stalker" (@yayayamie) September 27, 2017
And text chains! I love this Twitter account btw. She has some A+++ content, let me tell you.
Twitter is suffering what most shows do in their later seasons by introducing a bunch of characters no one really cares about
— The Stephen Harper (@stephenaharper) September 27, 2017
Looking at you, Cousin Oliver.
What do Twitter and the USA Network have in common?
Thank you folks, Brough to you by @Suits_USA
— Katie Notopoulos (@katienotopoulos) September 26, 2017
CONSCIENCE: "don't do it."
*still 223 left*
— Sean O'Kane (@sokane1) September 27, 2017
And finally… An ode to Brian Cross.
<) )╯ THANKS / \ \(•_•) ( (> FOR
<) )> READING