In a move that would change one of the site’s primary features, Twitter is considering expanding the 140 character limit for posts.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Interim CEO/co-founder Jack Dorsey has started a project under codename “140 Plus”. “140 Plus” is aiming to focus on new ways for users to expand past the 140 character limit Twitter is known for.
While a final version has not been reached, the company has been debating what needs to be done to the limit. The character limit has helped create new lingo, and a certain charm with its briefness. Users usually find a way around the limit by uploading images of screencaptured text, or “tweetstorming”, when a user posts a series of tweets in a short period of time.
The biggest issue is determining how long to extend the limit to, and what the expansion would ultimately look like. Too drastic of a change could completely alter the way Twitter looks. Some suggest simply adding 10 more characters, while others want to invest time and efforts into developing a new publishing platform, for future profit.
This discussion is occurring during a time of product team transition. As opposed to releasing products piece by piece, there is time and efforts being put into the development of a broader long-term vision. Twitter has recently put efforts into attracting the average internet user, by giving users a summary of popular tweets since their last visit, and cutting down on the time it takes to register as a user. Dorcey said recently, “Twitter also has to be the most powerful microphone in the world.”
Twitter and its other social-media competitors are increasing their battle to become a major media-distribution platform. A new push for longer form content, as noted by Facebook’s development of Instant Articles, shows a push to appeal to publishers and bloggers. Facebook’s new feature is in direct competition to Medium, a blog platform created by Twitter co-founder Evan Williams.