Many of you will have seen in the news last week, Twitter are currently toying with the idea of changing the much loved 140 character limit to 10,000! And, many of you will have noticed the dismay of Twitter addicts worried about their newsfeeds being filled with Facebook style essays!
As a result of this outrage, Twitter saw share prices fall drastically at a time when the platform is already coming under scrutiny due to last year’s predictions not being met. With a new CEO, and a major shake up within the engineering team, changes are inevitable, but changing the 140 character limit…. That’s sacrilege!
For some time, it has generally be considered that Facebook is the platform where people glamorize their life and lie to their friends, while Twitter gives users the platform to tell the truth to strangers.
Part of the beauty of Twitter’s honesty is the character limit. The 140-character limit challenges Twitter users to keep their point concise and avoid waffling. As a result of its concise nature, Twitter has become the number one platform for news and opinion, with sport and politics gaining a true stronghold.
Recent studies from Social Media Examiner have revealed that Tweets with 80 characters or less received the greatest level of interaction, which goes to show that in our throw away, fast moving culture, people do not have the time/want to take the time to read long posts. They want information quickly, and they want it on the go, hence the popularity of Twitter!
To put 10,000 characters into context for social media users, LinkedIn currently has a character limit of 689 characters, and up to this point you have taken in a cool 1667 characters in this blog, so imagine your time line potentially being filled with posts six times as long as this!
By introducing a character limit as outrageous as the 10,000 proposed, Twitter will lose its snappy appeal, which will leave many users disgruntled and as a result lower the number of users, which in turn will put advertisers off. For social media platforms, advertising is the number one source of income, and if the people are not there to advertise to, the money spenders will look elsewhere.
As one of the leading social media agencies in the UK, we know how difficult it can be trying to fit everything you want to say into 140 characters, but that’s part of the charm of twitter, and by messing with it you would be ripping the soul out of the number one platform for opinion and debate!