Twitter Extends Tweet Limit to 280 Characters

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Twitter has introduced a 280 characters per message limit to all its users, ending the original 140 character limit that has characterized the social media site since its inception.

This decision comes after Twitter launched a reduced experiment in September to extend the 280 character length to a limited number of users.

The extension will not apply to users who write in Japanese, Korean and Chinese. They will continue with 140 characters because – by the nature of those languages – they are able to condense their tweets by utilizing fewer signs.

The head of Twitter product, Aliza Rosen, explained in an official statement that the objective of that September test was to analyze if it was feasible to make this character increase compatible with the preservation of the speed and brevity of its service.

Twitter notes that about 9% of tweets in English reached the previous limit, reflecting the challenge of compressing a thought into 140 characters and sometimes resulted in users forgoing the tweet instead of spending the time needed to edit their original intended wording.

After extending the limit to a select group, English users “abandoned” an initiated tweet just 1% of the time.

Image: Matt Hamm (cc)