You are to blame for Twitter wanting to increase character limit

Dear hardcore Twitter user,

I see that you have heard the news making the rounds that Twitter is considering increasing the post character limit from 140 to 10,000. I also see that you are already lamenting this and tearing your hair out. But hollup let me point out to you that YOU are responsible for this development.

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When you really have something to say, you go to Facebook or Medium or your blog to publish your 2,000-word essay, and then come use Twitter as a warden to send traffic to those platforms. Presenting detailed arguments and exegeses is horrible on Twitter (which is why you go use those other platforms for more detailed public communication to start with). You have a sentimental attachment to your 140-character limit because you feel good showing off your mastery of English in terms of the ability to craft your thoughts into concise bites. But you are an intellectual minority. The average person – the huge majority of people online – just want to express themselves without requiring or exercising any great wordsmith skills.

Okay, pay to use Twitter. Mba! You are not willing to pay. Even adverts are a problem to you. You complain about adverts everyday. Kilode? What do you want Twitter to do again? Twitter stays unprofitable and niche – all because of you and your preferences. But Twitter needs to make money. Twitter needs to grow bigger (or to use a fancier term, to scale). It makes sense for Twitter to try to go where the numbers and the money are. It makes sense for Twitter to pander to the majority’s needs. Don’t you love democracy anymore? Twitter for the people….or something like that.

Everything you prefer Twitter to be is exactly why it isn’t as successful as it should be. “But Twitter is unique because of the 140-character limit”. Duh. Uniqueness for the sake of being unique is nonsense. Survival is the first rule of the jungle. And so, Twitter considers this option. Will the character limit be extended to 10,000, as being circulated? Maybe. Maybe not. But I hope you get it. The proposal makes sense.

re

9 comments

  1. How true is the assertion thats twitter is not profitable?

    And IMO, I think being positively unique for the sake of being unique is definitely not nonsense. It pays atimes to stand out among the crowd. Like that, you get your special fans who will easily bond with you.

  2. Good move in my opinion,maybe with this I’ll finally be bothered with Twitter..in as much as it’s great to stand out from the crowd,of what benefit is that if it doesn’t bring in the crowd,let’s face it without a large user base any IM App is doomed..

    1. Twitter isn’t an IM app, they also have a large user base, turning those numbers and engagement into revenue has been the problem

    2. Jack Dorsey pointed out that because of Twitter’s character limit on tweets, people have resorted to writing longer posts in Note apps and then tweeting the screenshots or worse (from his PoV) writing the posts on other platforms (blogs/medium even Facebook) and then tweeting the link to their followers. so basically it’s about increasing engagement and that should impact ad revenue and income/profitability. it’s not a one off thing either, Twitter has been making some subtle changes recently to change how people use Twitter. sponsored posts, polls, removing character limits on DMs, group DMs etc

  3. Twitter as a platform is bedevilled by a lot of issues chief among them being the monetization and profitability of its services,but of an equally serious concern is the low MAU(Monthly Average Usage),in other words,the number of people actively using it is rather low compared to e.g WhatsApp,Facebook and Wechat which are its contemporaries,hence the drive to increase the character limit..

    1. WhatsApp & WeChat are IM services, comparing MAU numbers is an exercise in futility. Facebook too, Facebook is the home of all Social Media, it’s so much more than Twitter could hope to be. eg I go to Facebook almost everyday for the Calendar notifications

  4. Seriously, there are a lot of people on Twitter who aren’t wordsmiths – where on earth do you get the impression that people,use Twitter to show off their so-called mastery of English? It’s very much the opposite!

    Also, remember that Twitter started off as a site for journos and media people, before the hoi polloi came and overran the place.

    1. Exactly my view. The reason why most people like twitter is bcos of its brevity.

      The inability of the admin to capitalize on that is definitely not bcos of the character limit.

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