With the change, “you’ll be able to share a Tweet privately with any of your followers,” Sachin Agarwal, a product manager at Twitter, explained in a blog post.
For private sharing, iOS and Android mobile users need to “long-press” a tweet of their choosing, and then choose a new “Share via Direct Message” option. Using Twitter.com or TweetDeck, users need to tap the “••• More” icon, and then select “Share via Direct Message.”
Users on the receiving end will see the tweets in a push notification — then they will be displayed directly in conversations.
Twitter is hardly the only social media company trying to build out its direct messaging business.
As was clearly demonstrated by its decision to buy WhatsApp for $19 billion, Facebook thinks mobile messaging is a big deal. CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently said that messaging is now “one of the few things that people actually do more than social networking.”
“In a lot of countries, we’ll see that maybe 85% of the people who are online will use Facebook, but maybe 95% of people — or in some places 99% — will use SMS or sent text messages,” Zuckerberg said during a “town hall” meeting, earlier this month.
Three months after separating its messaging app from its flagship mobile app, Facebook Messenger has been downloaded more than 500 million times, Facebook recently boasted.
Google recently released a standalone Messenger app for Android. Messenger, so called, can be used for SMS and MMS phone functions, as well as for sending and receiving audio messages.