After testing 280-character tweets among Twitter royalty for the last two months, the new longer form messages can now be sent by everyone. Just what we were all asking for…
Twitter say the change will barely affect service because the vast majority of users tweet well under 140 characters, raising the argument that if we’re all staying well under the character limit why would you bother increasing it? Regardless, it’s happened now and Twitter takes great pains to point out that "people who had more room to Tweet received more engagement (Likes, Retweets, @mentions), got more followers, and spent more time on Twitter.".
This means double the amount of space for Kanye’s philosophical musings, but it also means double the Trump and really is that worth it?
Twitter have come under fire this year for not doing enough to tackle Russian bots manipulating the site and for allowing abusive messages to slip through the net without adequate policing. With this in mind, the ‘big announcement’ of 280-character limits seems to fundamentally ignore the problems with the service and could lead to more and more high profile figures stepping away from the platform.
Users: Deal with the harassment, particularly of queer, female users.— Gugulethu Mhlungu (@GugsM) October 31, 2017
Twitter *Oprah voice*: EVERYBODY GETS 280 CHARACTERS! https://t.co/5WW5AKtXV3
There’s also an argument to be made that sticking to the short character limit had forced journalists to be more creative with the way they express themselves and their news stories, cutting down on unnecessarily complex terms and helping make things more transparent. It remains to be seen whether the change will have any real impact on how the platform is used, but for now we’ll just enjoy the visionaries who are truly utilising their new space…
Twitter just gave me 280 characters.— NoahJ456 (@NoahJ456) September 28, 2017
ah, it seems i have access to 280 characters now. i, like many others, would like to use this extra space to bring up something that is dear and important to me. something that will challenge the mind of the average person- now tell me, what if stuart little, the mouse.. was goth— goth turtle (@dubstep4dads) September 28, 2017
The only good thing about #280Characters is… more space for animal emojis! 🐨🐯🦁🐮🐻🦊🐼🐵🐸🐠🐟🐡🐬🦐🐙🐆🐅🦏🐘🦍🦌🐪🐫🐢🐍🦎🐜🕷🦀🦆🦋🐛🐝🐒🐨🐯🦁🐮🐻🦊🐼🐵🐸🐠🐟🐡🐬🦐🐙🐆🐅🦏🐘🦍🦌🐫🐢🐍🦎🕷🦀🦆🦋🐛🐝🐒🐨🐯🦁🐮🐻🦊🐼🐵🐸🐠🐟🐡🐬🦐🐙🐆🐅🦏🐘🦍🦌🐪🐫🐢🐍🦎🐜🕷🦀🦆🦋🐛🐝🐒🐊— WWF UK (@wwf_uk) November 8, 2017