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Twitter has confirmed in coming months it will be simplifying Tweets and the count of 140 characters.

Twitter revealed that @names in replies and media attachments (like photos, GIFs, videos, and polls) will no longer “use up” valuable characters. Another change which users will note is the Retweet button on their own timelines. This will allow users to Retweet or Quote Tweet their own tweets if they feel to reshare them.


Here’s what will change:

– 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!

– 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.

As this change will impact the hundreds of thousands of products built on top of Twitter’s platform, Twitter is offering a grace period while developers transition their products. The changes will impact the public REST and Streaming APIs, Ads API, Gnip data products and Display products, like Twitter’s Fabric Kit for embedded tweets and timelines displayed on web and mobile, the company noted in a blog post aimed at developers.

Twitter did not give an exact timeframe for when the changes would go live, beyond “the coming months.”

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Kevin Alemba
Music lover and writer. Twitter: @alembah

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