Twitter has announced an update to their service which many may not like. Twitter has been including Tweets in select timelines showing different types of content from people you don’t follow, and based on their testing plan to introduce Tweets in your timeline from people you don’t know.
According to Twitter:
“we recently ran experiments that showed different types of content in your timeline: recommended Tweets, accounts and topics. Testing indicated that most people enjoy seeing Tweets from accounts they may not follow, based on signals such as activity from accounts you do follow, the popularity of the Tweets, and how people in your network interact with them.”
In some ways, this sounds like an extension of the Recommended Users – just taken one step further. As with any algorithm, one can’t help but wonder what criteria they use and what weight is given to each one as Twitter tries to “improve your home timeline” and “continue to show you Tweets you care about when they matter most. Most of the reactions to Twitter’s Tweet announcing the changes were negative.
Don’t. RT @twitter: We’re testing and exploring ways to include Tweets in your timeline we think you’ll find interesting or entertaining.
— Ryan Day (@ryaneatscake) October 17, 2014
@twitter PLEASE don’t do this. One of the great things about Twitter is my ability to control the content. Forcing tweets is basically spam.
— Michael (@STLMetsFan5) October 17, 2014
A couple responses did seem resigned to the fact this was inevitable and offered some constructive criticism as well.
@twitter Maybe we cannot avoid this but then let me rate if that tweet is really interesting and remove it automatically if not interesting
— Cyrill Schumacher (@SchumacherFM) October 17, 2014
Twitter is constantly making changes to their social media network, as are others, but more and more of these updates seem aimed at pushing content and ads you don’t specifically ask for in your timeline in hopes you’ll click on them and increase the number of people you follow. Long gone are the days of having full control over exactly what you see in your timeline, not only on Twitter but also on Facebook and Google+ as these services attempt their best guess at trying to streamline what you really want to see. Perhaps this Tweet sums it up perfectly:
What do you think about the latest move by Twitter? Let us know in the comments below, or on Google+, Facebook, or Twitter!