Twitter rolls out 280 character limit for all users

Following last month’s trial of expanding its 280 character limit, Twitter has today announced it will roll out the new length to all users.

“Looking at all the data, we’re excited to share we’ve achieved this goal and are rolling this change out to all languages where cramming was an issue,” the company said in a media statement.

Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter

During the trial most users kept below the 140 character limit, the company claims: “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.”

The company also dismissed the risk of users gaming the media’s new format.

“It’s worth emphasising again that people in the test got very excited about the extra space in the beginning and many Tweets went way beyond 140. People did silly (creative!) things like writing 1 character per line to make their Tweets extra large. It was a temporary effect, and didn’t last long. We’ll definitely see some of this novelty effect spike again with this week’s launch and expect it to resume to normal behaviour soon after.”

Twitter’s new extended feature will be rolling out immediately except for Asian languages such as Korean and Japanese which aren’t affected by the 140 character limit.


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