Twitter Links, Photos Won't Count Against Tweet Character Limit

Nearly 33 million Twitter passwords are reportedly being sold on the dark web. Reuters

Since its inception, Twitter has implemented a hard 140-character limit for tweets sent out on the microblogging platform. Now, a decade after its launch, Twitter may finally be making changes to the character limit.

Bloomberg reports, citing sources, that Twitter will soon announce that photos and links in tweets will no longer count towards the 140 characters. As it currently stands, adding a link to a tweet takes away 23 characters (regardless of full length URLs or shortened links) and images can set users back up to 20 characters.

Earlier this year, there was a great deal of speculation surrounding Twitter’s character limit with news sites reporting that Twitter would be increasing that limit. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey shut down those rumors in March.

“It’s staying,” said Dorsey. “It’s a good constraint for us, and it allows for of-the-moment brevity.”

Twitter imposed the character limit when it started so that tweets could be sent through mobile text messages, which then could only contain 140 characters. Users have found clever ways to get around the character limit by taking pictures of longer text, using third party services that link to longer text and sending tweets in a string.

Most recently, Tweetbot, an iOS/OS X Twitter client, introduced a new feature called Topics that allows users to tweet several related tweets and can also automatically add the same hashtags to the group of tweets for continuity. While this does not increase the 140 character per tweet limit, it does organize tweets of the same topic in a common string.

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