Twitter increases character limit from 140 to 280


Twitter has announced plan to double tweet characters from 140 to 280. Twitter’s Product manager Aliza Rosen, and a senior software engineer Ikuhiro Ihara say on Tuesday evening in a Twitter blog post.

According to the company, the new 280-character is currently only available to a “small group” of users. According to International Business Insiders, Twitter’s CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey is one of those select users who can access the new limit. He used it Tuesday to explain the reasoning behind the change, and said that the original limit was an “arbitrary choice.”

Part of the blog post reads…

“…this isn’t a problem everywhere people Tweet. For example, when I (Aliza) Tweet in English, I quickly run into the 140 character limit and have to edit my Tweet down so it fits. Sometimes, I have to remove a word that conveys an important meaning or emotion, or I don’t send my Tweet at all. But when Iku Tweets in Japanese, he doesn’t have the same problem. He finishes sharing his thought and still has room to spare. This is because in languages like Japanese, Korean, and Chinese you can convey about double the amount of information in one character as you can in many other languages, like English, Spanish, Portuguese, or French.

We want every person around the world to easily express themselves on Twitter, so we’re doing something new: we’re going to try out a longer limit, 280 characters, in languages impacted by cramming (which is all except Japanese, Chinese, and Korean).”

The company found that nine percent of tweets in English have 140 characters, the limit. While less than one percent of Tweets in Japanese hit the limit. “Our research shows us that the character limit is a major cause of frustration for people Tweeting in English, but it is not for those Tweeting in Japanese,” said the blog post.

Some users have been using different means of beating the 140-character by either using TwitLonger, a site that allowed users to type their Tweets into the site and then would automatically post a link to that Tweet to their Twitter feed. Some other simply type their message screen shot it if on a smartphone, or use screenshot tool, if on a latop, and therefore upload the photo on twitter.

These tactics might become less common on the app if the 280 character limit is expanded to the full community of users.

The 280 character is presently accessible to a group of users. It’d be made available to all users when it’s perfected.