Twitter’s Increased Character Count: What We Know

In the face of stalling user growth, there has been a flurry of activity at Twitter to stimulate the slump it’s experiencing in capturing new users. The most recent result of this activity is Twitter’s ‘Moments’ product.

In recent months however, there has been speculation of Twitter changing one of its most fundamental features – the 140-character limit.

In September 2015 tech website Re/code published an article announcing that Twitter was planning a new product that would allow users to post tweets that are longer than the platform’s established 140-characters.

Since then, news sources have run with the idea that Twitter is planning to change the character count limit to 10,000 characters, an exponential increase that would dramatically change the social network’s landscape of brevity-conscious updates.

Twitter’s HQ has been largely quiet in discussing public speculation, however on the 5th of January, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey posted the following:

Despite no mention of 10,000 characters, Dorsey’s update confirms (albeit obliquely) that Twitter is examining the limitations that 140-characters poses to users.

Considering Twitter’s well-documented stagnant user base, opening up the character count of posts might invite a wider audience who might have struggled to adopt the truncated nature of tweets.

The speculation on character count comes after the highly-marketed ‘Twitter Moments’, a large venture from the company that aims to keep users ‘in the loop’ on developing events and trends.

The changes that Twitter is embracing reveal that the company – in particular CEO Dorsey – is eager to broaden its platform’s appeal.

However, as Twitter continues to evolve, users have expressed concern that the social network may jettison features that made it popular in the first place.


Nat Rubyan-Ling

Author: Nat Rubyan-Ling

Nat is compellingly unpersuasive in his writing unless he's been fed, in which case he turns into a walking literature academic. Which he was. A keen observer of online culture, you'll find him making odd statements about the existential malaise that memes signify.

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