Social Media Tech News

Twitter Gives Everyone 280 Characters to Play With

Dave Parrack 07-11-2017

Twitter has decided to give everyone 280 characters to play with. So by the time you read this you should have the option to write tweets of up to 280 characters in length. Why? Because 140 characters is just so 2006. And Twitter needs a miracle if it wants to survive another winter.


Twitter began life in 2006 How Twitter Was Born [Geek History Lessons] Originally created in 2006 as a short messaging system for small groups, Twitter has since evolved into a powerful communication tool that has dramatically changed how information is shared and spread online. Twitter functions as... Read More as a way for people to send messages to each other within a small group. At the time the messages were sent via SMS, which has a limit of 160 characters. Which is why tweets have always been limited to 140 characters (the other 20 reserved for usernames).

But the times, they are a-changin’…

Twitter Now Lets You Tweet Longer Thoughts

Twitter has been testing the longer 280-character limit since September. So Twitter has, for a couple of months now, endured a class system even beyond the Verified vs. Non-Verified segregation. Thankfully, that is now coming to an end, with everyone getting 280 characters.

In a blog post titled “Tweeting Made Easier”, Twitter explains why it’s rolling the new longer limit out to everyone. Essentially, while the guinea pigs tested the longer limits early on, they then settled down into tweeting normally, just with extra room to express themselves if they saw fit.

Furthermore, Twitter thinks that by allowing longer tweets, people will spend less time having to edit down their thoughts. This will allow them to tweet more often and experience higher engagement levels. So, if this all checks out, everyone’s a winner. But especially Twitter.


The one exception (or three exceptions) to this rule are that people tweeting in Japanese, Korean, and Chinese will be stuck with 140 characters. But this is purely because “these languages have always been able to say more with their Tweets because of the density of their writing systems”.

Short and Snappy Snippets of Information

I have been on Twitter a long time, and consider myself a Twitter purist. So I’m not convinced that increasing the character limit for tweets is a good thing. If you want to post essays, try Medium instead You Can Now Get Paid to Write Medium Articles Medium, the popular blogging platform on which millenials like to pen wordy opinion pieces, is opening up its Partner Program to let anyone and everyone earn money from their writing. Read More . But Twitter should be reserved for short and snappy snippets of information. IMHO.

Are you on Twitter? If so, how do you feel about the character limit being raised from 140 to 280? Will this improve Twitter? Make it worse? Or not make any difference? Would you have preferred Twitter to change something else instead? Please let us know in the comments below!

Image Credit: Andreas Eldh via Flickr

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  1. CC Waterback
    November 9, 2017 at 11:01 am

    Gab allows 300 characters. You're late to the party, Twitter.

  2. simmens
    November 8, 2017 at 10:05 am

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