Things are about to be shaken up on one of the big four social platforms, after one of the most controversial news stories of the week dropped yesterday. No, we’re not talking about the Kardashian babygate, we’re talking about Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s announcement that a new 280 character limit is being trialled on the network.
It’s an idea that’s been toyed with for a while, but Dorsey’s (deliberately verbiose?) Tweet confirmed it.
Unsurprisingly, Twitter users around the world are in uproar. The 140 character limit is Twitter’s key USP, and the snappy nature of the platform is what forces uses to be sharp-witted and quick to react. Tweets are rapid-fire and easy to digest, which is why millions of users turn to the platform to source the latest news stories and reactions.
As traditionalists, we’re totally #team140. And if Twitter wants to solve some of it’s problems, perhaps it should look at addressing other issues that litter the site, rather than attacking its beloved character limit.
We’ve listed six key areas that Dorsey should target before meddling with tradition. Here goes.
1. Improve the advertising platform
A key reason for Twitter’s plummeting stock is surely that advertisers are turning away from the platform. A clunky interface makes the advertising platform frustrating to use, and, despite dropping figures, adverts are expensive, especially in comparison to Facebook.
We recommend sprucing up the Ads Manager and offering more ad types, as well as making costing more competitive. With Facebook storming ahead, surely Twitter should be putting all their efforts into clawing back those all-important advertisers.
2. Introduce a Facebook-like Business Manager
Sure, there’s Tweetdeck, but it’s unintuitive and quite frankly not up to the standard social media managers need. Facebook Business Manager has a lot to live up to, and introducing a similar feature to Twitter could really help encourage businesses and agencies to put more focus into the channel.
3. Allow editing of Tweets
Facebook allows it, Instagram allows it, so why on earth is there no ‘edit’ button for those times users let an errant spelling mistake slip through the net. Instead, users have to delete and re-post their witty comment, which really just ruins the moment…
4. Tackle the harassment
One of the biggest pitfalls of Twitter is its struggle to crackdown on the harassment that’s widespread across the site. Racism, sexism, neo-Nazis – all bigger problems than users struggling to fit their message into 140 characters. Double the character limit, double the problem.
5. Down with bots
That moment when you think you’re popular only to find Pamela the sex bot sitting in your new follower list. Bots are all over Twitter, from porn bots and spammers though to, more worryingly, political influencers. What’s worse, bots are getting more sophisticated, so it’s getting tougher to eradicate them. Best work harder, Dorsey.
6. Ban Donald Trump
Sure it’s sometimes fun to marvel at the President’s stupidity from the (relative) safety of across the pond, but it’s all getting a bit much. We’re all one tiny-handed slip away from World War 3. Do the right thing Twitter, stop making excuses.