Twitter Considers Dropping 140-Character Limit

Opening up more space for users could lead to more meaningful statuses.

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Twitter, which is definitely bigger than Facebook, is exploring the possibility of removing its most unique feature: the 140-character limit.

Co-founder-and-interim CEO Jack Dorsey has been exploring ways to increase the social media platform’s user base and would potentially back a long-form tweet option.

Recently, Twitter has explored new ways to get more out of its 140 characters. The limit was recently rescinded for direct messages, and the “retweet with comment” option allows users to use up to 280 characters.

There are also app extensions, such as TwitLonger, that allow for longer messages to appear externally via a link. If all else fails, there’s the good ol’ “write a Note and upload the photo of it” method.

It’s not yet clear if Twitter would lift its character limit wholesale, increase the number, or create its own extension. Currently, apps like TwitLonger take you off-site, and Twitter likely wants to encourage as much internal use as possible. Other possibilities include taking mentions or links out of the character limit:

It might not be a surprise to users if photos were also removed from the limit.

It will be interesting to see how users actually react to whatever changes Twitter has in-store. It becomes more passé with age to post daily update Facebook statuses, but Twitter is a free-for-all. Opening up more space for users could lead to more meaningful statuses, or just solidify the platform as the ultimate space for the ridiculously mundane and charming:

The reality is that whatever modifications Twitter makes will likely effect “premium” users (i.e., companies who pay for promoted tweets). It is also possible, however, that news outlets could get special permission to host fuller-length stories on the site. I don’t think it would surprise anyone to see BuzzFeed listicles get a pass either. Twitter’s likely expansion is certainly coming some day. Whether it’ll be effective is less certain.