Twitter shortens length of tweets
19 February 2013
Twitter has forced its members to be even more succinct than before, with changes to the way it deals with web links that mean they will get two fewer characters.
Previously, including a weblink the number of characters available in each tweet from the full 140 to 120. Now when Twitter members want to share a URL there are only 118 left in which to add a comment.
When members post a link, Twitter automatically wraps it in another link beginning t.co, even when another URL-shortening service is used. The firm says this process allows it to protect the service from malicious websites that might spread computer viruses and track the most popular links being shared.
Twitter's introduction of its own link wrapper was seen as part of an effort to take more control over how members interact with the service. This has also included restricting third party Twitter clients in favour of Tweetdeck, which it owns, creating its own Instagram-style image filters and stopping other social networks such as LinkedIn letting members use their Twitter follower lists to make contacts.
The moves are part of Twitter's plans to grow its advertising business by assuming more control over content.
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