Tweeting in 280 Characters? Now You Can Do It, Too


During the 280-character test, some users argued Twitter should focus less on the length of the tweets and more on the content.

Twitter has been thinking about longer tweets for years, but got cold feet the last time the company considered expanding the limit in early 2016.

The move will be greeted with delight by politicians, advocates and online pundits, many of whom crave extra space on Twitter to make longer arguments. Timrasett along with another user going by name HackneyYT broke Twitter's character limit with a message that begins "People!" Proud of how thoughtful the team has been in solving a real problem people have when trying to tweet.

"During the first few days of the test, many people tweeted the full 280 limit because it was new and novel, but soon after behaviour normalised", wrote Aliza Rosen, Twitter's product manager. Only 5 percent of tweets sent during the test period exceeded 140 characters, the company said, and just 2 percent exceeded 190 characters.

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The only Twitter users who will remain at 140 characters are those who post in Japanese, Korean or Chinese, the company said.

Twitter has struggled with making its service accessible to those who are accustomed to a lack of constraints on Facebook, home to billions.

In a blogpost announcing the expansion, the company said that the prior limit had been reached in 9% of tweets, reflecting "the challenge of fitting a thought into a tweet". Twitter did not provide information on whether it had seen an increase in harassment on its site, due to the higher character limit.

'Our goal was to make this possible while ensuring we keep the speed and brevity that makes Twitter, Twitter. "Additionally, many people tweet in multiple languages, sometimes within a single tweet". But for the small number of tweets that needed extra space, the change meant users could tweet more easily and more often.

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Only 2 per cent of tweets used up the full 280 characters, against 9 per cent of tweets that now spend all 140, suggesting the new limit will be much less of a bottleneck.

"As a result, your timeline reading experience should not substantially change, you'll still see about the same amount of Tweets in your timeline". The new limit will roll out to Twitter users in nearly all 40 languages Twitter supports.

"For reference, in the timeline, Tweets with an image or poll usually take up more space than a 190 character Tweet", Rozen added.

The social media giant has around 330 million monthly active users around the world.

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