As rumoured, Twitter has announced some major changes to the way they will count characters overnight. The changes are part of what the company is calling a way to make ‘Faster, Easier & More Expressive Tweets’.
The changes won’t be coming to Twitter today, instead they’ve announced the updates will appear ‘over the coming months’, instead they’re announcing the changes this early so that their developers can get on board. So, what’s changing?
Media attachments: When you add attachments like photos, GIFs, videos, polls, or Quote Tweets, that media will no longer count as characters within your Tweet. More room for words!
Retweet and Quote Tweet yourself: We’ll be enabling the Retweet button on your own Tweets, so you can easily Retweet or Quote Tweet yourself when you want to share a new reflection or feel like a really good one went unnoticed.
Goodbye, .@: These changes will help simplify the rules around Tweets that start with a username. New Tweets that begin with a username will reach all your followers. (That means you’ll no longer have to use the ”.@” convention, which people currently use to broadcast Tweets broadly.) If you want a reply to be seen by all your followers, you will be able to Retweet it to signal that you intend for it to be viewed more broadly.
The difference this makes will make for a more conversive and informative Tweet over all. Including a bunch of people in a tweet will no longer limit the meaning you are trying to convey, though the challenge of crafting an intelligible response in a limited space will still be there, just not as restrictive and you can include pictures to drive a point home.
Look for the changes to start appearing in the next few months.