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The limit of 140 characters on Twitter is destined to disappear, and may potentially be extended to an incredibly lengthy 10,000 characters, as reported by Re/code.

“So what does that equate to in words?!” you may cry. That’s probably the length of a 2,000 word essay!

Why oh why, Twitter?!

The project, which currently is called “Beyond 140”  aims to increase the time users spend on the social network, so that they are not “forced” to click on a link every time they want to access more information about a tweet that may interest them.

In an attempt to avoid sending current active users into hysteria and maintain a consistent user experience, the tweet will show only first 140 characters… and if there is more, a “read more” button will appear allowing the user to view any extended content.

On one hand, the shift may be a welcomed move to anyone that struggles to stick to a 140 cap when trying to express an idea or opinion, and may favour a more carefree, and lengthy form of expression, like updating your status on other popular networks such as Facebook and LinkedIn. But by doing so, will Twitter lose what sets it apart from these platforms – a quick to read and concise channel we’ve grown to love?

Here are just a few reactions to #Twitter10k:

Are there any positives to such drastic move?

Despite such strong and emotional reactions from fellow loyal tweeps, we do foresee some positives.

  • More characters mean more data and richer insight into your target audience, allowing you to create and serve content that’s relevant
  • Improved customer relations via Twitter as a result of being able to effectively articulate a solution to a query or complaint

However, it is the 140 character limit that is Twitter’s main USP. By extending the character limit of tweets, the user experience will become little different to the likes of Facebook or Tumblr. Gauging from the scathing reactions on the internet, many Twitter users will be turned-off by streams of long-winded posts… after all, “ain’t nobody got time for that”.

What are your thoughts on Twitter’s controversial plans for a 10,000-character limit?

2 thoughts on “Twitter to dump its 140 character restriction?

  1. I think the coverage and reaction to Twitter’s proposed 10k character limit has been sansationalist and knee-jerk. It’s all ‘dumping’, ‘jettisoning’ and abandining’ the USP of 140 characters. Twitter’s not going to do that. They’re actually building a walled garden. And that can make them money, and be a less painful experience than the jump to an unknown external destination at present.

    Will Oremus put it succinctly on Slate – “What’s really changing here, then, is not the length of the tweet. It’s where that link at the bottom takes you when you click on it—or, rather, where it doesn’t take you. Instead of funneling traffic to blogs, news sites, and other sites around the Web, the “read more” button will keep you playing in Twitter’s own garden.”

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