Your Twitter Experience Is About to Change

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Twitter announced today that you soon will be able to say more in tweets that include media -- such as images and videos -- or user names.

Soon, you will be able to say more in tweets that include media — such as images and videos — or user names, like @MoneyTalksNews.

The social media network Twitter announced Tuesday that it will bend its own rules to allow for longer tweets, among other tweaks.

The New York Times describes these changes as “the biggest makeover to the form of a tweet in years.”

Twitter’s chief executive, Jack Dorsey, tells the newspaper that the tweet-lengthening changes have been requested by Twitter users “for quite some time.”

According to the blog on Twitter’s website, here’s how you’ll be able to squeeze more characters into tweets, which remain limited to 140 characters:

  • Replies: When replying to a Tweet, @names will no longer count toward the 140-character count. This will make having conversations on Twitter easier and more straightforward, no more penny-pinching your words to ensure they reach the whole group.
  • 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!

Other changes announced include:

  • 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.

Twitter went live as a social media network in 2006. The company behind the network, Twitter Inc., filed its IPO in November 2013 to become a publicly traded company.

Twitter says its latest changes will become available “over the coming months” — and more changes will follow. The company reports it is “exploring ways to make existing uses easier and enable new ones, all without compromising the unique brevity and speed that make Twitter the best place for live commentary, connections, and conversations.”

What’s your take on the tweet’s impending “makeover”? Share your thoughts below or on Facebook or Twitter.

Stacy Johnson

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