Commentary

Twitter Continues To Ease Character Limits, Will No Longer Count @Usernames

Character limits have always been Twitter’s defining, er, characteristic. In recent years, however, the platform has taken measures to loosen its original limitations on user expression.

Giving users a little more leeway, Twitter will no longer count @usernames -- when replying to another user group -- toward tweets’ 140-character limit.

In tests, the social giant found that the change makes people more likely to engage in “conversations,” according to one of its product managers, Sasank Reddy.

Per the change, the person or group that users reply to will now appear above their tweet's text -- rather than within the tweet text itself. To see and control who is part of their conversation, users can tap a “Replying to…” tab.

When reading a conversation, users can expect to see what people are saying, rather than seeing lots of @usernames at the start of a tweet.

As such, “It’s now easier to follow a conversation, so you can focus on what a discussion is about, and who is having it,” Reddy notes in a new blog post.

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More broadly, Twitter is trying really hard to give users more control over their experiences.

Earlier this month, for instance, it began letting users mute specific words from their timelines.

Twitter originally debuted a mute feature last November, after which point users could remove certain keywords, phrases, and entire conversations from their notifications.

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