Twitter, which made its reputation in part by limiting users to 140-characters a time, has said 280-character tweets will be available to in most languages. The company ran a test of 280-character tweets in September that showed users spent less time editing their tweets and were less likely to abandon them.
“Our goal was to make this possible while ensuring we keep the speed and brevity that makes Twitter, Twitter,” said product manager Aliza Rosen. “Looking at all the data, we’re excited to share we’ve achieved this goal and are rolling the change out to all languages where cramming was an issue.
“During the first few days of the test many people Tweeted the full 280 limit because it was new and novel, but soon after behavior normalised. We saw when people needed to use more than 140 characters, they Tweeted more easily and more often.
“But importantly, people Tweeted below 140 most of the time and the brevity of Twitter remained.
“We – and many of you – were concerned that timelines may fill up with 280 character Tweets, and people with the new limit would always use up the whole space. But that didn’t happen. Only 5% of Tweets sent were longer than 140 characters and only 2% were over 190 characters.
“As a result, your timeline reading experience should not substantially change, you’ll still see about the same amount of Tweets in your timeline.”
Users posting in languages including Japanese, Korean and Chinese, which do not face the issue of “cramming”, will continue to have a limit of 140 characters, Twitter said.