Twitter doubles character count limit to 280 in global test

Twitter to test longer tweets to drive engagement

Just 0.4% of tweets sent in Japanese have 140 characters, which is a "considerable difference to a 9% of English tweets having 140 characters", the company said.

In a tweet, the company's CEO, Jack Dorsey, called it a "small change, but a big move" for the company.

"We understand since many of you have been Tweeting for years, there may be an emotional attachment to 140 characters - we felt it, too", the company said in its blog post.

Tweets of 280 characters will be rolled out to a small group of users initially, Twitter said in a blog post. Four years after that, Farhad Manjoo, then of Slate, argued for 280 characters at length, in an essay he said was inspired by a conversation he'd had with me on Bloggingheads.

It's true that some languages allow each character to count for more.

Which explains why Twitter is finally testing an expanded character limit: It hopes more space will mean more tweets. The notion that 140 characters are too restrictive is almost as old as Twitter itself, and 280 characters have always been an obvious upgrade-one that social-media power user Robert Scoble said he'd be willing to pay $20 a month for way back in March 2007.

If brevity is the soul of wit, Twitter is about to get a lot less clever.

Twitter to test longer tweets to drive engagement
Twitter doubles character count limit to 280 in global test

The social media website says statistics have showed them there's demand around the world to fit more into a tweet.

Twitter originally introduced the 140-character limit to adhere to the official limit for SMS text messages. It's what makes it such a great way to see what's happening.

It also stopped counting images and other media attached to tweets as part of the character limit in an attempt to improve the service.

A higher character limit was inspired by how people use Twitter when writing in Chinese, Japanese and Korean, the company said.

Twitter has hinted at expanding the character limit in the past, only to backtrack when users protested. Not all of those changes have been welcomed by its most devoted users; Twitter has reversed policy before due to user complaints. Until Twitter unleashes the change to everybody, I'm not sure if we'll know whether the average 280-character tweet wil be twice as thoughtful, informational, and/or entertaining as a 140-character one, or merely flabbier.

We asked if U.S. President Donald Trump - quite possibly the most famous tweeter of them all - would get the new feature.

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