10,000 Character Tweets

On January 5th, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said something controversial. That Twitter is considering moving away from the 140 character limit, which has for so long defined the network:

(Link)

Many pundits and Twitter users, myself included, are worried that this move will make Twitter something completely different from its current iteration and in-turn not as usable or appealing. I’m worried that this will make Twitter just another also-ran and is just a move to appease shareholders.

Having been on Twitter since 2007. I like how it’s short form and quick to read and catch up. If a user wants to read more all they have to do is click on a link and it takes them to the source site where the information resides.

Granted we don’t yet know what Dorsey’s plans are for the character increase and how it’ll effect the network. For all we know, it might make Twitter even more sticky, relevant, and fun to use. It could also KILL IT.

On this weeks This Week in Google on TWiT.tv, the panelists had a lively discussion about this very topic.

The gang has some interesting points. If it enables publishers to share their content easier, quicker and still show their advertisements and it doesn’t necessarily “reside” on Twitter, then maybe it’s not a bad thing. Later in the discussion, the idea that maybe the tweet expands beyond 140 characters if the user wants to read more (a good analytic marker to track) and then shows the article in an AJAX like window. This might be a neat feature.

Ultimately, we have to remember that we don’t “own” Twitter. Twitter is public, so we might own stock, but ultimately the users don’t have a say in what happens on the network. This is another great example of why owning your own space online (blog, Website, app) is so important.

What do you think about this rumored move to 10k characters on Twitter? Is it a good thing, bad thing, or are you waiting to see what it looks like? Post your thoughts in the comments below.

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