Twitter has always been defined by its brevity: the 140 character restriction was originally mandated by SMS data limits. But Twitter users have also always found ways around that limit, from threaded “tweetstorms” to tweets sharing larger chunks of text as a screenshot . Now, the social network is finally giving into popular demand and doubling its character limit to 280 characters.
When can you start sharing longer tweets? And what does this mean for the future of Twitter? Here’s what you need to know.
When are longer tweets rolling out?
280-characters tweets are still in beta and only available to a “small group” (including company co-founders Jack Dorsey and Biz Stone) for now. In a blog post explaining the change, Twitter didn’t say when the new feature would carry over to everyone.
Based on previous updates, it could take months. Back in May 2016, Twitter announced that media attachments like GIFs and polls would no longer count towards a tweet’s character limit, but it took five months to roll out the new feature. Doubling the length of all tweets is an even bigger change, though it’s possible Twitter is better prepared to quickly release this update.
How to start tweeting longer tweets right now
Though the official rollout is still TBD, The Verge found a way to unlock the new 280-character limit right now using Chrome and a little light coding. Web developer Juliette Pretot has provided an even simpler option on her website. Twitter may decide to block these workarounds, but they seem to work for the moment if you want to impress your followers.
What does this mean for Twitter?
With this update, Twitter is mostly responding to what its users have already demonstrated they want from the social network. Longer tweets will make the service easier to use so you don’t need to edit down a post to cram it into 140 characters. That should encourage more people to use Twitter and to tweet more often.
Twitter also explained that its character limit is actually more restricting depending on what language you’re writing in. For example, 9% of all tweets written in English are 140 characters long, but in Japanese only 0.4% reach the old limit. So this update could help Twitter boost use in some countries (including the U.S.) and expand into others.
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Then again, longer tweets could also bog down the Twitter experience by replacing quick jokes and comments with larger chunks of text. Longer tweets are also a slippery slope. Now that we’ve ditched the 140-character limit, what’s to stop the company from expanding to 1000 characters or removing the character limit completely?
Of course, any time a social network announces a big change, people find a reason to complain. But most of the time, we get used to it after a few months. That’s probably what will happen here, too.
In case you haven’t heard, Twitter is testing out a longer 280-character message limit, doubling the restriction that’s been in place since the service started back in 2006. Initially, the longer limit is only available to a few select accounts during the testing period, but intrepid users have discovered how to access the new feature.
UPDATE: Sorry readers, it looks like Twitter has decided to spoil our fun. The mechanism for the 280-character tweet functionality below has been patched out. You’ll have to wait for the feature to be added to your account or rolled out service-wide.
There are many methods, most of which involve editing some code in your browser’s developer tools—but web developer Juliette Pretot created a bookmarklet tool based on code from a GitHub user going by Zemnez to streamline the process.
Grab the bookmarklet from Pretot’s page and copy it to your bookmarks—in Chrome or Firefox, you can just click and drag the link to the bar, but if that doesn’t work in your browser, just create a new bookmark with the following code as the URL:
Now, head to the TweetDeck webapp, and log in with your account. You should see the Twitter content you’re used to separated into a few columns.
Click the bookmarklet you just created, then click the “compose” button (the blue feather in the top-left corner). Bingo, you have access to a 280-character tweet. Click the “Tweet” button to send your message—you can use this process for replies, quotes, images, and links.
Just remember to use the TweetDeck interface and click the bookmarklet before the compose button, and you can do this as often as you like (at least until they release the feature to everyone on all versions of Twitter). Enjoy your newfound tweeting freedom.
How Will Twitter Character Limit 280 Affect Your Twitter Campaign?
For millennials and digital marketers everywhere, Twitter’s 140-character limit is just ingrained in everything you do. From tweeting about your new sale, to sharing a guest blogger’s new blog post with your followers, paring down your content to as few character’s as possible is just what you do.
However, after a recent testing period, Twitter has now bitten the bullet and introduced its double character-limit of 280 characters to all users. In a statement from Twitter itself, “Historically, 9% of Tweets in English hit the character limit. This reflects the challenge of fitting a thought into a Tweet, often resulting in lots of time spent editing and even at times abandoning Tweets before sending. With the expanded character count, this problem was massively reduced –that number dropped to only 1% of Tweets running up against the limit.”
However, some say that this 9% wasn’t really a big deal for many people, and for most, the reduced character limit helped them to remove unnecessary words in Tweets, distilling the resulting Tweet to just the most important and impactful information.
It’s not all doom and gloom though, others are overjoyed at the expanded limit, and amongst those are digital and media marketers everywhere! Here are a few tips on how to make the new 280-character limit work for you and boost your marketing campaigns on Twitter:
Whether you are embracing the new character-limit or not, we can all agree that double the characters, means double the emoji’s! Using emoji’s is a great way to pique your potential customers’ interests, to get your Tweet noticed, and to bring a bit of fun to your message.
Hashtags are any digital marketers bread and butter, and with an increased character limit, you can now include your whole message AND a few extra hashtags to really boost your chances of appealing to the correct people. Hashtags are one of the most useful and effective ways to show off your content to those who might be interested in it on Twitter, so embrace the change and try a few extra hashtags to see what happens.
This may sound obvious, but with 280-characters to play with, you can now include all of the information that you want to convey to your customers and potential customers in just one Tweet. No more using ‘1/2’ and ‘2/2’ to show that your message is split up into sections, or even having to post an image of text to get your point across, now you can show the whole message to your followers in one fell swoop.
Another great thing about the new character limit is that you can now include more than one link within a single tweet. Whether that’s links to your Facebook, website and Instagram, or including information about more than one product, we’re sure there are lots of creative ways to use links within your Tweets now.
Twitter never really lent itself to making lists before, but now thanks to those extra 140 characters, you can show your content in a new way. By adding lists of things to do, products to buy or even instructions for customers on how to avail of a coupon code or offer to your tweets mean more engagement, and more fun!
In an effort to evolve like most of the online world for better profits, there is a Twitter character limit update that started Nov. 7, 2017.
IN THE BEGINNING THERE WAS A TWEET
Ever since its inception Twitter was known for its limit of 140 character spaces for its tweets. At first a user was severely restricted because if you were to place a website link within the tweet, it would eat up a lot of the character count. The same was true if you posted an image or video.
Then Twitter made some VERY WELCOMED changes to attract more users and help keep the ones they already had. First improvement was making any website link, regardless of how many characters it was in length, to only use up 22 characters. Now there was no need to shorten your links.
The second improvement was to now allow a user to tweet an image, gif or video and NOT have it subtract from the character limit. So now it was possible to tweet a full 140 characters and include an image without going over the limit.
A NEW TWITTER CHARACTER LIMIT UPDATE
Some may think that the new character limit is a sign that Twitter is changing because their social network is on the decline. This is totally untrue. It is basically the opposite. They are growing and this change, like their partnership with Google, will help grow them even more.
Though there has been an ongoing debate between Twitter users as to whether the character change from 140 limit to 280 is a good thing, Twitter sees it as a way to attract more users. It will also help to get those users who feel 140 is too restrictive, to start engaging more consistently.
By offering more character space, a tweet can now be more descriptive for those who have problems with the previous 140 limit. But I HIGHLY recommend that you do not use too much more than the original 140. Being short and to the point is still best for the User Experience of Twitter.
MORE IS NOT ALWAYS BETTER
When it comes to website content, more is better with regards to Google rankings, only if it is necessary for the information you are sharing. But when it comes to a Twitter tweet, the shorter the better. People do not want to read long tweets, so remember that when constructing a tweet.
I personally like this new update and not because I had problems with 140 characters. For the most part I was able to express myself within 140 and less characters. But there have been times that my tweets were 5 to 10 characters too long. Now I will not have that problem anymore.
With the new Twitter 280 character limit, many new users will find it easier to construct a tweet. But if you can, try to keep your tweets as short as possible, perhaps no more than 150. A shorter tweet creates a better UX for Twitter users and will still get good Google search results.
HOW TO USE TWITTER FOR YOUR WEBSITE BUSINESS
Unlike other social media networks, with Twitter you can post your affiliate links on a more regular basis without getting blocked. However I recommend that you still share those links sparingly because you do not want your Twitter followers, and potential followers, to view you as a spammer.
To learn how to use Twitter for the social media marketing of your website business, check out my three training tutorials below. My How to Use Twitter Part 1 teaches you the basics of how to use this social network, and Part 2 explains how to tweet more effectively.
My third tutorial goes into detail on how you can track the progress of your tweets. Showing you how to use this information to further increase visibility of your website and attract more traffic. See the links below for these tutorials. If you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.
Mix is a tech writer based in Amsterdam that loves cinema and probably hates the movies that you like. Tell him everything you despise about (show all) Mix is a tech writer based in Amsterdam that loves cinema and probably hates the movies that you like. Tell him everything you despise about his work on Twitter.
As you might have noticed, Twitter is currently testing a new format that doubles the 140 character limit to 280, so you can more freely fit your thoughts into a single tweet. The feature is presently available to select users only, but there is a little trick you can pull off to get the extra space right now.
Bear in mind there are more than one ways to do this – we think this is among the more straightforward and hassle-free approaches; especially for Chrome users. So here is how you do it:
- Load up Tweetdeck at tweetdeck.twitter.com.
- Head to View, hover over the Developer menu, and select Developer Tools.
- Find Sources and click on the arrow below to access Snippets.
- Once you open Snippets, click the ‘New Snippet’ button and copy/paste the following code in the empty window on the right.
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- Click the Play button below to run the snippet.
- Boom, now you can tweet with 280 characters.
- Please note that this trick works only in Tweetdeck, which means you will have to use the Tweetdeck client for all of your 280-character tweets.
Update: Developer Juliette Pretot has since tipped us off to an even easier way to activate the 280 character tweets. Find out how here.
There you have it: You can now share your crappy reflections on life in double the space. Much like these people here:
Wait so how do you even know when you can tweet with 280 characters or not this is absolute malarkey and holy shit I think I can actually tweet to 280 wow umm fuck. They gotta change this shit back. Forreal. I got like 70 characters left. Shit. This is awful.20 characters. Fuck.
>tfw 280 char limit woes
you write your tweet and shit and you realize you still have plenty of characters left.
Its like…I have no idea what to fill this void with…Emojis? Nah…
See what I’m talking about…I just don’t know how to end this tweet oh wait almost there yes!
Look how long my tweets can be, I now have the ability to tweet two hundred and eighty characters. That give me lots of new power to tweet about many things, important and not so much. What would you tweet with 280 characters. God forbid @realDonaldTrump gets this. #280characters
While this is an interesting development for Twitter – and the strongest indication yet the site is willing to change its foundations – chances are it will take some time before users start settling into the expanded character limit… which means we’re likely to see some mindless rambles like the ones above quite often.
Give it some time, it will pass.
Now lets hope adding the ability to edit tweets is next on the agenda. Everybody seems to want that.
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So Twitter has now finally decided to double their Character limit of the tweets from 140 to 280. As tweeted by Jac Dorsey (his first 280 character tweet), a lot of thought was given in decided to double the limit.
The new limit will start with a small group and will eventually be rolled out to other users.
Even though a lot of people have already started hating the decision, if you are one of those who wanted more character to post better Tweets, then here is a way you can do be before it’s being rolled out to your account.
It’s actually a workaround, by using a script
No, it’s nothing shady, the script just lets you bypass the 140 character limit and lets you tweet in the new limit of 280 characters. You have to follow the steps mention below.
Step 2: Open the script that can be found on GitHub. Click here
Step 3: On the GitHub page of the script, run the script by clicking on the Raw button (on right-hand side)
Step 4: Once you do that, a new tab will be opened by Tampermonkey extension from where you can install the script.
Once you install the script, you can open Twitter and start writing your tweet. You will notice the Character counter freezes at 140 and Characters exceeding after 280 appear in red.
And then you can tweet it, just like this –>
So, thanks to @Twitter and their new character limit of 280, I will see less number of tweets at once on my phone while I browse my timeline.
And, hmm, maybe, em more fillers in the Tweets to make it longer, just to, umm, annoy people around you.
Si, I thought to annoy a few
It’s pretty cool to be one of the first to get the feature. Go get it now.
I f you’ve ever struggled to cram 140 characters into a single tweet, Twitter wants to help. The company announced on Tuesday that it will be testing a new limit of 280 characters in all languages except for Japanese, Chinese and Korean.
The company says it will try out the feature with a small group of users before deciding to launch it more broadly. Twitter is excluding those aforementioned three languages because it’s easier to convey more information with a single character in Korean, Chinese, and Japanese, Twitter’s Aliza Rosen and Ikuhiro Ihara wrote in a blog post. “This is a small change but a big move for us,” CEO Jack Dorsey wrote on Twitter referring to the announcement. “140 was an arbitrary choice based on the 160 character SMS limit.”
Although the feature is only in testing, it’s already causing some concern among Twitter users. Some worry that the new limit could take away from Twitter’s appeal, which is in its brevity. Others are calling for Twitter to focus more attention on cracking down on Russian bots that have been using the platform to promote disinformation and propaganda.
Twitter has been moving in this direction for quite some time. Earlier this year, the company made it so that Twitter handles in replies would no longer count toward the character limit. And about a year ago, it altered its rules so that attachments like GIFs, photos, and polls wouldn’t count toward the character constraints. The move comes after Twitter’s earnings report from July indicated it couldn’t grow its user base, reporting 328 million monthly active users as it had the previous quarter.
In a tweet, Dorsey said he the new 280-character limit still keep Twitter true to its “essence.” “Proud of how thoughtful the team has been in solving a real problem people have when trying to tweet,” Dorsey wrote. “And at the same time maintaining our brevity, speed, and essence!”
Twitter just made its biggest change since it launched more than a decade ago.
For now, it’s being tested with a small subsection of Twitter users, before a potential roll-out to the rest of the user base in the coming weeks.
But Twitter users have noticed that with a small tweak, it’s easy for anyone to activate 280-character tweets right now.
Here’s a quick TamperMonkey script that force enables 280 character tweets in the Twitter web client.https://t.co/uUhW0CKekS
— Prof. 9 (@Prof9) September 27, 2017
After that, go to this script @Prof9 wrote and click the “raw” button, and then “install” when prompted. Just like that — you’ve got 280-character tweets!
Alternately, if you’re up to playing around in the code yourself, @rpy offers a more technical option:
breakpoint the twitter webapp at line 17915 in commons.en.js and then run
— the result respecter (@rpy) September 27, 2017
The reason these work is basically that the code that dictates whether a user has access to the new 280-character limit is stored on the users’ computers, rather than Twitter’s servers — so it can be tweaked.
this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad idea this is a bad
— Rob Price (@robaeprice) September 27, 2017
The change has predictably caused controversy however — with some users suggesting that the limit doesn’t need to be altered, and Twitter should focus its resources elsewhere.
Twitter: A lot of people are getting abused on our service so we’re rolling out louder megaphones.
— Oscar Williams-Grut (@OscarWGrut) September 27, 2017
The guys running Twitter haven’t got a clue. The problem is that new users don’t get engagements so swiftly quit after joining. That’s it.
— Sam Bowman . (@s8mb) September 27, 2017
Speaking as one of the small group of people who’ve been selected to test the 280 character limit, please please please please please please please please please please please please please please please please please please please please change it back you dreadful people.
— Mike Bird (@Birdyword) September 27, 2017
Twitter’s 280 character limit has now been rolled out to everyone. In this post I’ll give you a few tweet ideas on how you can use the new update for your brand or business.
Personally, I really liked the 140 character limit, and after being in this industry for some time, I’d gotten good at chopping down long-form text to fit the platform’s restrictions. I loved the challenge, and I also think it’s been a big part of the appeal of Twitter – you know you’re logging on to short thoughts and not long rants.
I’d rather have an edit tweet option than more characters (who’s with me??), but with that said, this isn’t a terrible update, since it can be really hard to fit everything you need into 140 characters.
Here are eight ideas on how you can use Twitter’s new 280 character limit to advantage.
1. More Room To Tell Your Story
The first advantage of Twitter’s 280 character limit expansion is that you have more room to tell your story.
Before, it was a little more difficult to really tell a story on Twitter, and although you don’t have have that many more characters, you can now add a little more context (and complete thoughts and sentences) where you couldn’t before.
2. Multiple Links In Tweets
More characters mean more links.
Now that you have 280 characters, you can include more links within your tweets – I used this format in a sort of “In case you missed it” tweet and included links to two of my top social media tips of this year.
– Simple Ways To Grow Your Social Media Presence On And Offline: https://t.co/CcAa77ixkZ
– Why You Should Create A Core Social Media Schedule (And How To Do It): https://t.co/ICPzL0PSyD pic.twitter.com/OkhWBT1pJY
3. Round Ups
You can also now develop more robust round-up tweets on Twitter.
Create round-up tweets to tag your favorite influencers, or share the best articles in your industry for the week or month. This type of tweet is great for giving followers some value-added tweets.
4. List Posts
Aside from round-ups the new character limit can give you more opportunities for creating list posts.
List posts are really popular, because they give readers a lot of info in one place. Share a list of your favorite tools, a short how-to, quick tips, or products you use most.
In this example, I’ve use the list format to tease and drive traffic to my ‘8 Things You Can Learn From The Best Instagram Accounts’ blog post.
Some things I’ve learned from managing successful #Instagram accounts:
1. Consistent posting
2. They have cohesive feeds
3. There’s a clear #strategy
Read the full list of things can learn from the best accounts #ontheblog -> https://t.co/zwOzAd278R pic.twitter.com/9BFbhyLsaG
5. Vertical Tweets
The new character limit also gives you the ability to create longer vertical tweets.
This may seem useless, but longer tweets will visually take up more room in feeds – which is good for you but can be annoying to readers. Play with spacing and different ways to fill the extra room, and get more attention to your tweets. Just don’t do it too often.
6. Longer Quotes
Have you ever tried to share a quote and then before you know it you’re out of room? There goes tagging the influncer you’d intended to link to.
With 280 characters, you now have more than enough room to share longer tweets and tag the person who said it. Tagging the creator of the quote can help gain the attention of the person, which, in-turn, can help you gain more visibility for your account.
7. Ask Longer Questions
Engagement is key for growth, and now you can ask more robust questions from your audience to build more engagement and interaction on your accounts.
8. Add More Context To Quote Tweets
Part of creating a well-rounded Twitter presence is retweeting others. With Quote Tweets, Twitter gave us an opportunity to add our own thoughts to retweets, which is a great opportunity to tell your followers why you found this info important (and why they should check it out too).
With more Tweet characters, you’ll be able to add even more thought and personality to your Quote Tweets, further building relationships and interaction with your followers.
Whether you love or hate the new Twitter 280 character limit, it’s best to learn to use it to your advantage – and keep an open mind to new possibilities.
This post was first published on Dhariana Lozano’s blog.