For years, Twitter has held fast to a 140-character limit on all tweets. Despite pushback from users, they have been unwilling to increase this limit even marginally. Until now. Twitter has just introduced a shortlist of items, all of which are widely used, that will no longer count towards the character limit of tweets. While you will still be limited to 140-characters, the following additional items will no longer subtract from that amount:

  • Images
  • GIFs
  • Videos
  • Polls
  • Quote Tweets

It is worth noting that the image and video attachments mentioned above only work for those hosted directly on Twitter. This means that items, especially videos, hosted on other sites (like YouTube) will still count towards that limit.

These changes were originally announced back in May, and are a means of showing that tweets today incorporate a number of things other than text. Another change that has yet to be rolled out to all users is the removal of character limit restrictions on @-mentions at the beginning of tweets. This would allow users to mention to as many people as they wanted at the beginning of their replies without reaching their limit.

Twitter is also working on ways to remove the commonly used .@-mentions, which people use to broadcast certain tweets to all of their users. Previously, starting a tweet with an @-mention would only display that item to the specific user you were talking to. By placing a single period before the @ symbol, users found that they could broadcast these same tweets to all of their followers. Twitter is currently developing methods to remove the necessity of this .@-mention for Twitter users, and we should see these changes soon.

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