Twitter has revealed it’s testing increased character limits for some users, upending a strict eleven-year adherence to the 140 character barrier. Right now, some punters are being given 280 to play with.

In a blog post (which, quite handily, was not restrained to 140 characters), the social media platform explained the shake-up of its defining feature was driven by data suggesting some users are put off Tweeting by the longstanding restriction.

According to the platform, 9% of tweets in English bash against the 140 character mark, and that statistic apparently suggests users would benefit from increased character allowances.

Twitter also took note of how different languages function on the platform. Apparently inspired the ability of Korean, Chinese, and Japanese users to jam more information into their tweets by virtue of their written languages, Twitter says it’s investigating what happens when other users are given the latitude to convey the same amount of information.

Twitter Is Testing 280-Character Posts And Diehard 140 Fans Are Filthy
via Twitter.

The test aims to determine if more people will actually use Twitter, amid sluggish user growth compared to the other social media monoliths.

That’s all well and good, but the platform is also aware of how attached some people are to the idiosyncratic limit.

“Twitter is about brevity,” the blog post says.

It’s what makes it such a great way to see what’s happening. Tweets get right to the point with the information or thoughts that matter. That is something we will never change.

We understand since many of you have been Tweeting for years, there may be an emotional attachment to 140 characters – we felt it, too. But we tried this, saw the power of what it will do, and fell in love with this new, still brief, constraint.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is excited about it, but some users, uh, aren’t. Amid concerns that the upped limit will dilute the odd, insular form of communication the platform has fostered, some users are also mad about the lack of an edit feature. And the fact out-and-out bigots can, and do, use the platform to spew their bile.

On the plus side: more space for shitposting.

We’ll let you know if the change eventually rolls out to all users. Maybe we’ll even do it in a full 240 characters; if not, ttyl, bbs. x.

 

 

 

Source: Slate
Image: Anadolu Agency / Getty