Rumor has it that Twitter will be extending the character limit of Tweets from 140 characters to upwards of 10,000 characters. The news comes from a report in Recode, which cites multiple sources claiming the longer tweets should be expected by the end of the quarter, but public reaction is mixed at best.
Descriptions of the new feature say the longer tweets wouldn’t clutter up feeds. Instead, up to 140 characters of any tweet will appear in user’s timelines, but a new call to action would allow users to read more.
The sources also say the company is already planning for how users might attempt to spam timelines so they might be able to combat it. For example, there may be limits to the number of other users that can be mentioned in tweets.
Unfortunately for the company, response to the rumor has already been overwhelmingly negative. Many say the 140 character limit has been the defining feature of Twitter and without it there is little to distinguish the platform.
The hashtag #Twitter10k has already taken off as users both mock and lament the rumor. Here is just a sampling of what users are saying:
— Jessnuts Roasting 🎄 (@SpaitoGaming) January 6, 2016
— 🍷Nic (@nicpaints) January 6, 2016
— EARTHDOGBB (@EARTHDOGBB) January 6, 2016
Our demands are simiple:
-an edit button
-links/images not counting against the 140 characters
We hope this can end peacefully.#Twitter10k
— Sam Laird (@samcmlaird) January 6, 2016
Given the reaction to the rumor, it is hard to predict whether Twitter will follow through or go back to the drawing board for the next big feature. The best indication will be if we start seeing tests for different character lengths in tweets in the coming month.