Twitter’s “Edit Tweet” Feature: Do We Really Need It?

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Jack Dorsey, the co-founder and CEO at Twitter Inc. (NYSE: TWTR), suggested that the company is considering adding a new Edit Tweet feature to its platform. Although no specific details have been provided, Dorsey has expressed his thoughts upon the implementation of such a widely requested feature. In a town hall event held at IIT Delhi, India, Dorsey hinted upon the various issues that could occur if this feature went on board. At the same time, he did not shy away from listing all the things this feature could fix.

So why Twitter has not yet introduced an edit button for tweets? Well, one of the reasons the preservation of content.

The forum administrators often lock threads to prevent users from deleting or removing all valuable content from posts. As a public forum comprised of short posts, Twitter is no different. Removed content can lead to broken links and lower rankings from search engines due to issues crawling a site, said Jack Dorsey.

Twitter believes that such a feature should be enabled such that it aims to solve a chief problem rather than leading to misinterpretations. Dorsey, however, suggested that the editing of old tweets could result in some conflicts, especially, if a user has retweeted something because they happen to agree with it but later change it into something due to change of heart. Such changes could either result in conflicts amongst the users or in conflicts with the company.


Users Demand The “Edit Tweet” Feature!

The edit feature on Twitter has been one of the most sought-after requests that Twitter has managed to dodge for so long. Twitter claims that most users prefer the edit option to correct a typing mistake or to correct the link attached. In fact, YouTuber MKBHD – world’s one of the notable Tweep – has also been calling for this edit option for tweets for quite some time now. Reports claim that Twitter deems this task to be much more achievable than allowing users to edit tweets that are much older.

Is There A Real Need Of It?

During the event, Dorsey also addressed the issue of fake news that has been circulating for a while on twitter. Reports suggest that Twitter has suspended about 70 million accounts in the months of May and June and this pace was observed to be moving into July as well. According to a certain survey, it was found that close to 90% of ‘active’ Twitter users spread misinformation, especially during public emergencies or disasters. Such misinformation and misinterpretation of news spread like wildfire over the internet. They reportedly move much faster than the actual news, leading users to put their trust in an unknown source and acting upon it. Dorsey has stated that the tackling of an issue as large as that of the fake news is not quite easy. He has claimed that the real problem is not only misinformation as jokes can also be accounted under such a category, but the main problem is also to tackle the accounts whose attempt is to mislead the users by such jokes.

Due to such a widespread issue about fake news, Twitter has faced a loss in its Monthly Active Users (MAUs). In Q3 2018, the number of Twitter MAUs decreased by 4 million when compared to Q3 2017 and by 9 million when compared to Q2 2018. Twitter blames this decline on its effort to clean up the micro-blogging platform from the accounts that had been linked in the spread of fake news.

The micro-blogging company is thus considering the release of a new edit tweet feature that could possibly improve the number of its users. Also, the company has added that it is their effort to ideally prevent unlimited editing, as this feature could be misused to alter one’s controversial statements. Rather, the company prefers to introduce this feature in the best way possible to help in fixing any predominant problems, like a misspelling or using the wrong link.

Will This Effort Sprout Fruits?

Thus, as a conclusion, Twitter seems to be making an effort to win back its users as well as retain its current users by finally taking the users’ views about an edit feature into consideration. This can also be seen as a way to make amends to the decrease in the number of users that Twitter has seen due to the widespread “fake news” issue.



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