Billy Shakes once said: “Brevity is the soul of wit.”
Well, Bill—I’m sorry to say: Wit is dead.
Because as of last night, Twitter doubled the character limit for every single user on the platform.
Here’s my initial reaction: Worst.. Idea.. Ever..
If ever there was an example of less is more, this is it… If anything, they should have cut in half, instead of doubling… 70 characters instead of 280.. In fact, you want to really improve twitter and the entire experience?. Board up the freaking windows, and shut it down, let’s go home!.
If really smart people have imploded on twitter and melted down, and they have, what chance do the really dumb people have. And doubling the characters doesn’t make it twice as good, it will make 100 times worse.
The entire appeal to Twitter was its character limit. It forced everyone to step their game up. It fostered cleverness. It was tight. It was easy to read. And most of all—it was a governor on stupid people with stupid takes. Because no matter how stupid someone was—they could only be stupid for 140 characters.
Twitter at its best was beautiful. The micro-blog of micro-blogs. It made smart people smarter. And it really handcuffed dumb people.
That was then. But This is now. And we’re on a first class ride from internet Utopia to internet Hell. Especially me. Because twitter is a huge part of this program. Huge. Say it with me now: I read more tweets—because I get more tweets.
But it was hard enough sifting through the all the crap to get to the good ones. Now you whack jobs have twice as much real estate to make it twice as hard on me to find usable content for the program. Thanks a lot, Facebook—err!!—Twitter. Thanks for wrecking my life and my talk show. We had a good thing going. We had a sharp knife in the toolbox and you just dulled it down to rubber.
But seriously—Twitter should just re-brand as Facebook. Or an e-mail server. Or a CVS receipt. Why stop at 280? If you’re gonna trash the site—might as go all in. Lift the entire character limit. Let the anarchy ensue. You already wrecked a really good thing. May as well just light it on fire now.
First AIM announces its slow, painful death—and now this. Any other brilliant internet platforms wanna die today? Reddit? Wikipedia? YouTube?
This is why we can’t have nice things. We’re gluttons. We’re never satisfied with what we have. We always want more.
Well I’m here to tell you: Less is more. And in the case of Twitter: Less was the best.
Rest in peace: 140. You will be missed more than you’ll know.