#RIP Twitter? Reaction to Altering the Timeline 09 Feb 2016
It is not often a bombshell erupts in the social media network. Usually, the big news is of one company buying another such as Facebook buying Snapchat and so on. However, the big news of today surrounds the rumors that Twitter has been planning to change the whole structure of how it works, quite literally. Instead of having people’s timelines in time-based chronological order, it was reported that Twitter would use advanced algorithms to shows tweets that Twitter thinks you will find the most useful – this can be seen to be taken from competing against Facebook, that already adopts such a strategy for their user’s timelines. However, the news of this timeline change has not pleased Twitter users, with the hashtag #RIPTwitter trending worldwide. Why would such a change to the timeline become such a bad idea for Twitter? Here are the main points to the argument.
#1 Timing of Tweets is Extremely Important
For some Twitter users, they will find tweets based on what Twitter thinks they want to see very useful. However, for the vast majority, the way users use Twitter is by regularly refreshing their timeline to see the most up to date tweets that have just come in. This is because most people tweet about something live as it is happening. With this in mind, the chances are that the algorithms will show tweets from events that have pasted, taking up the space of the events that are being talked about live. That is the big difference between Twitter and Facebook. The tweets of people are very much based on live events.
#2 Equal Power to All Twitter Users
Unfortunately, one of the negatives that will come with using algorithms to determine what tweets appear when on the timeline is that for smaller size Twitter users with a low count of followers and tweet about their daily lives, the chances are that they will be ranked lower on timelines than celebrities and other, what Twitter deems, more important users.
However, that does not mean I don’t want to know what my best mate Andy had for breakfast, does it? Using algorithms will change the power different users have which will give more power to those with followers and more interactions and less to the humble users with tens of followers (who you might be the most interested in anyway!).
#3 Twitter is Simple
One of the key reasons why Twitter is used in its millions worldwide is because it is one of, if not the, most simple social media platform to use – send out a short message and anyone can see it.
If Twitter decides to add complexity to the timeline using algorithms, the attraction of Twitter will decrease. No longer will Twitter be that simple social media platform people love because they see tweets live and coming in on their timeline as it happens. Adding functionality to Twitter might just make Twitter lose the attraction that made it so popular in the first place…
A student in England studying a Masters in Automotive Engineering with Motorsport, Will created AskWillOnline.com back in 2010 to help students revise and bloggers make money developing himself into an expert in PPC, blogging, and online marketing. He now runs others websites such as FreePoemAnalysis.com and RestoringMamods.com You can follow him @willGreeny.