Twitter Rolls Out 280 Character Limit in Canada and Worldwide

Nov 08, 2017, 00:26
Twitter Rolls Out 280 Character Limit in Canada and Worldwide

"We are making this change after listening and observing a problem our global community was having (it wasn't easy enough to tweet!), studying data to understand how we could improve, trying it out, and listening to your feedback". When Twitter rolled out the larger character limit, it noticed a drop in the number of tweets running against the maximum count.

The change is part of Twitter's plan to attract new users and increase growth.

The company said in September that it was testing a new upper limit because languages such as English couldn't pack as much information into 140-characters as other languages, such as Chinese, Japanese or Korean, which use can use characters that denote whole words.

According to the company, only 5% of tweets sent from people in the 280-character test group were longer than 140 characters, and just 2% were over 190 characters. The company suggests the issue seemed more concerning to users because "people in the test got very excited about the extra space in the beginning and many Tweets went way beyond 140". Though most Twitter users have long since adapted to expressing their thoughts in a more concise manner, the social media giant clearly feels there's room for improvement.

Twitter has been slowly easing restrictions to let people cram more characters into a tweet.

"We believe people spent less time editing their Tweets in the composer", said Rozen.

The company announced on Tuesday in a blog post that it was rolling out the 280-character limit to all languages where "cramming" characters was an issue. It became a hallmark of the service - an encouragement to craft short, sweet messages and contribute to the free-flow of conversation that became Twitter's main identifying feature. It was a temporary effect and didn't last long.

"In our testing, we have seen strong engagement levels with Tweets that are above 140 characters but ultimately, the best Tweets will come down to quality of language and content, whether the Tweet is 80, 180 or 280 characters", said Leanne Gibson, acting managing director at Twitter Canada.