Report: Twitter Loosens Character Limit on Sept. 19


Mark your calendar: Twitter will reportedly loosen 140-character limits on Sept. 19.

Starting Monday, links of any kind, including photos, will not count towards the social network's 140-character per-tweet cap, according to The Verge, which cited two sources familiar with the business.

Twitter in May confirmed an upcoming change that means media attachments like links, images, GIFs, videos, and polls will no longer shorten your pithy messages. Four months later—enough time for developers to update their apps—the company is readying itself for next week's global release.

Twitter did not immediately respond to PCMag's request for comment.

Folks often forget that the popular social media service was conceived nearly a decade ago as an SMS-Web hybrid platform: The seemingly arbitrary 140-character limit corresponds to the 160-character SMS ceiling (saving an additional 20-character buffer for usernames).

"It's become a beautiful constraint, and I love it!" CEO Jack Dorsey said in January. "It inspires creativity and brevity. And a sense of speed. We will never lose that feeling."

But while you can get a lot across in 140 characters, modern users frequently post attachments that limit messages to 117 characters or less.

There was also talk in the spring about ditching the ".@" convention, used by many to ensure tweets directed at or citing certain people show up in the timelines of all their followers. At the time, Twitter said new posts beginning with a username will automatically reach all followers; if you want to broadcast a reply, simply retweet it. It remains unclear, though, whether the changes will occur simultaneously.

"One of the biggest priorities for this year is to refine our product and make it simpler," Dorsey said in May. "We're focused on making Twitter a whole lot easier and faster."

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