You’ve probably heard the news: Twitter is easing its 140-character limit. Some users can now write up to 280 characters in a single tweet.
There’s still no definitive word from the company on when – or if – the increased limited will become available to everyone, but it’s safe to assume it’ll happen eventually.
Here’s how Twitter founder Jack Dorsey broke the news:
This is a small change, but a big move for us. 140 was an arbitrary choice based on the 160 character SMS limit. Proud of how thoughtful the team has been in solving a real problem people have when trying to tweet. And at the same time maintaining our brevity, speed, and essence! https://t.co/TuHj51MsTu
— jack (@jack) September 26, 2017
We’re not sure how much “thought” was required to come up with doubling the limit, but we digress.
If you’re not one of the lucky few who can now use 280 characters, don’t worry. You can still create longer content. Here are six tools that let you write longer Twitter tweets.
TwitLonger is perhaps the most well-known app for writing longer tweets; it’s been available for years.
It’s easy to get up and running. To begin, head to the TwitLonger website and click Write a Post in the upper right-hand corner. If it’s your first time using the app, you will need to give TwitLonger permission to access your Twitter account.
When you’re ready, type your tweet in the box, give it a title if you wish, and click Post It. In the past, the app would give you a warning if you had exceeded the 140-character count. Now, it posts the content for you regardless.
On the final screen, you can click Reply to create a thread of longer tweets.
In the image below, you can see how my tweet looks on Twitter. The app will add a (cont) automatically and include a link so anyone who’s interested can see what else you had to say.
2. Take a Screenshot
This isn’t a tool; rather, it’s a workaround. Using screenshots to write longer messages is a growing trend. You’ve probably seen people using the “cheat” in your own timeline.
The principle is simple. Use a note-taking app on your smartphone and write what you want to say. Just make sure it all fits on one screen.
Next, take a screenshot of what you’ve said and fire up the Twitter app. Tap on the new tweet icon and attach the screenshot to your tweet. You don’t even need to write any text. When you’re ready, press Tweet.
Thanks to recent changes in how Twitter displays images, people will be able to see what you’ve said in their timeline.
Perhaps this workaround is one of the main reasons that Twitter is increasing the character limit. If you use screenshots, the company has no way to know what your interests are and thus send you targeted advertising.
3. Tall Tweets
If you don’t like TwitLonger’s concept of using truncated tweets with links, you should check out Tall Tweet instead.
The app has two tools: tweetstorms and text shots. A tweetstorm will automatically slice your content into 140-character tweets and post them in rapid succession. A text shot converts your message into an image; it’s very similar to screenshot method we detailed above.
To get started, sign into Tall Tweets using your Twitter credentials and give the app permission to access your account.
Next, type your content in the on-screen box. In the image below, I’m using the opening paragraph from a MakeUseOf article about using Plex on Kodi as an example.
Below the box, you can choose whether to send a tweetstorm or a text shot. If you select tweetstorm, you can see a live preview of how your tweets will look at the bottom of the page. Unfortunately, there’s no preview available for text shots.
Finally, when you’re ready, click on Tweet.
The app does have one drawback – it’s impossible to edit the cut-off points in a tweetstorm. It occasionally makes threads challenging to follow.
JumboTweet is another easy-to-use web client for longer Twitter messages. As with TwitLonger, you log into the site using your current Twitter credentials. You can write as much text as you like, and a link to your extended text will be included in your tweet.
Click Sign in with Twitter to get started. Once you’ve authenticated the app, you’ll be redirected back to the message screen.
Go ahead and write your message, but before you post it, make sure you pay attention to the settings at the bottom of the page. JumboTweet maintains its own feed of content that was written in the app. To prevent you tweet from appearing in the company’s feed, uncheck the box next to Display the post publicly on JumboTweet stream.
Pasted is a great way to share any extended content with a lot of people online; it’s not Twitter-specific. That said, it’s a fantastic tool to use for longer tweets.
Unlike every other app we’ve covered, Pasted offers text formatting. You can edit font size, text style, text color, and more.
As such, it’s a great way to quickly share longer content that extends beyond a simple few sentences. For example, perhaps you want to share some technical instructions or detailed directions and need to highlight certain parts of the text.
To use the app, write and format your text in the on-screen box. When you’re ready, click Submit, and you’ll get a link to share with other people. Sadly, you cannot send the link to Twitter directly from the web app.
The final app we will cover is Tweenjoy. It uses the “attached picture” method we’ve spoken about elsewhere in the article.
The gives you 110 characters for the main part of your tweet, then a further 1,000 characters that will be turned into an image. You have to put at least some text in the image for the app to work, but the text in the main part of the tweet is not mandatory.
You can also set a background for your image and give your image a header, both of which help to make it a useful tool for creating quick memes and jokes as well as for sending longer text-based tweets.
Which Tools Do You Use to Send Longer Tweets?
Each of the six apps we’ve covered works in a slightly different way, but they all fulfill the same purpose: letting you bypass the imposed brevity of Twitter and get longer messages out to your followers.
Of course, there are lots more apps out there. So now it’s over to you. Which apps would you add to this list? What makes them unique?
As always, you can leave your thoughts and suggestions in the comments below. And remember to share this article with your followers on Twitter!
Image Credit: bloomua/Depositphotos