Twitter extends 280 character limit worldwide after successful trial



Twitter is going global with 280-character tweets after it found the change did not impact the brevity and speed of most posts.

The social media giant, which has around 330m monthly active users worldwide, announced in September it was testing the longer length, double the usual 140 characters, to help prevent users having to "cram" in tweets and express themselves better.

Now the company says it is going to expand the longer length to users in all languages except Chinese, Japanese and Korean, where cramming is not a problem because they can convey more in one character.

Twitter product manager Aliza Rosen said they wanted to make sure "every person around the world could express themselves easily in a Tweet...while ensuring we keep the speed and brevity that makes Twitter, Twitter.

"Looking at all the data, we're excited to share we've achieved this goal and are rolling the change out to all languages where cramming was an issue," she added.

After an initial surge of tweets hitting the new total, the novelty of the 280 character limit soon wore off.

People "tweeted below 140 most of the time and the brevity of Twitter remained," Ms Rozen said, adding: "Only five percent of tweets sent were longer than 140 characters and only two percent were over 190 characters."

Twitter hopes the expanded character limit will help it increase revenue and gain new users in the face of stiff competition from other platforms such as Facebook and Snapchat.

Over the weekend, some users found a way of sending 280 character tweets, bypassing the limit by posting updates that were thousands of characters long, breaking the site.

Earlier this year, the social media site removed character limits from direct messages sent privately between users.

It also stopped counting images and other media attached to tweets as part of the character limit in an attempt to improve the service.

Twitter revealed in its Q2 earnings this year that revenue fell 5% on the same quarter last year to $574m (£436m).