Twitter's 280-character limit comes to the masses

James Marshall
November 8, 2017

Currently, the 280-character tweet facility is available to a small group of its 328 million users but it would soon be rolled out globally, Twitter has said in a blog post.

Though neither user has offered any details on the exact method they used to send out this monster tweet, some have speculated that the use of certain URL suffixes (such as.cc) is what allowed for the exploit. Two German Twitter users successfully broke the existing character limit by sending a 35,000-character tweet. "But importantly, people Tweeted below 140 most of the time and the brevity of Twitter remained".

Twitter fully expects people to go a bit insane once they get access to 280 characters, which is exactly what happened when the company first started testing the feature in September. However she thinks giving users more space to express themselves within a tweet is good move on Twitter's part.

The social network said it hoped the move would stop people having to "cram" their thoughts into 140 characters.

According to Twitter, 9% of tweets in English hit the character limits.

Twitter has struggled with making its service accessible to those who are accustomed to a lack of constraints on Facebook, home to billions.

"Since we saw tweets hit the character limit less often, we believe people spent less time editing their tweets in the composer", said Twitter project manager Aliza Rosen.

Users writing in Japanese, Chinese, and Korean will still be limited to 140 characters. Some lamented the loss of the 140-character limit and thought it would destroy the soul of Twitter, turning it into an altogether more irritating platform.

Once the novelty of the extended space wore off, Ms Rosen said, most people still came in under the 140 mark.

Only 2 per cent of tweets used up the full 280 characters, against 9 per cent of tweets that now spend all 140, suggesting the new limit will be much less of a bottleneck.

Timrasett later apologized for the now-deleted tweet, saying they just wanted to show Twitter was "easy to crack". "You'll still see about the same amount of tweets in your timeline".

The company confirmed the new character limit would now begin rolling out to users. Only 2% of tweets had more than 190 characters.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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