Twitter’s New Edit Feature Is Controversial

Courtesy of takao goto (Flickr CC0)

Twitter is adding a new feature to its software, one that has been wanted for so long by the users, but feared by the app’s developers. Twitter is adding an edit feature. After 16 years of Twitter being around this will be the first time they will add this simple feature.

Courtesy of Toshiyuki IMAI (Flickr CC0)

The edit feature will allow tweeters to edit their tweets a couple of times in the first 30 minutes of their tweets going live. Edited tweets will appear with a pencil icon, timestamped, and labeled. Users will be able to click on the label to see the tweet’s full history, like the original tweet.

Twitter users have longed to wait for a feature like this to be added. People previously had to delete and retype their tweets if they wanted to fix a typo or fix a mistagged tweet. This feature hopes to bring relief to those users who had to go through that struggle to fix a simple mistake. But why if it sounds like a good feature did developers hold off on it until now?

Developers believe this feature could cause a lot of trouble. Twitter’s role as public discourse and as a de-facto newswire is what people fear the edit feature could mess with. It could possibly exacerbate Twitter’s existing safety and misinformation issues. That’s why Twitter is planning on adding a time limit and tweet history to protect the integrity of the conversation and create a publicly accessible record of what was said, the company said.

This feature will come first to subscribers of Twitter Blue. For the rest, this feature should be rolling out in the next couple of months. Twitter handled this addition well because from what we so far know this feature seems to favor transparency more. Twitter will be heavily reviewing this new edit feature to possibly spot misuses.

Written by Gabriel Salgado
Edited by Sheena Robertson


NPR: Twitter says it’s testing an edit button — after years of clamoring from users

The Verge: Twitter’s edit button is a big test for the platform’s future

Top and Featured Image Courtesy of Howard Lake Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

Inset Image Courtesy of Toshiyuki IMAI Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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