Twitter has finalized its character limit expansion from 140 to 280 characters, doubling the length of tweets users can create. Twitter users can now more freely compose tweets without worrying about having to cram their thoughts into the previous 140-character limit for the sake of brevity, which has long been Twitter’s trademark. The character limit expansion kicked off this September in a test that aimed to allow users to share their ideas more easily while somehow keeping the brevity of Twitter. However, the test did not include Japanese, Korean, and Chinese as these languages are set to retain the 140-character limit going forward since it is believed that people using these languages have no problem trying to make their posts succinct.
According to Aliza Rosen, Product Manager at Twitter, cramming was not an issue with Japanese, Korean, and Chinese because the writing systems of these languages are sufficiently dense. The decision to make the change permanent in most languages also stemmed from Twitter’s findings during the test, which revealed that the problem with limited characters (excluding links and photos) for most users was alleviated after the restriction has been modified, with only one percent of tweets reaching the limit from the previous nine percent when Tweets were limited to 140 characters. That is because people spent less time editing tweets before posting, unlike in the past when they had to squeeze the characters to fit them into the limit and sometimes even ditching the entire post completely. The drop in the percentage of tweets hitting the character limit indicates that the move helps users create posts more easily and send tweets more quickly than they do when the old character limit was still in effect, the company suggested.
There are some interesting results of the limit expansion as well, with the change supposedly increasing the opportunities to engage with more people in the form of additional followers and mentions. It also presented users with a chance to discover new content, the social media company said. It remains to be seen whether the change will significantly affect Twitter’s number of global users going forward.