On Tuesday, Twitter introduced "fleets" — fleeting tweets, which disappear after 24 hours — yet users have another major feature they would rather see. The new fleets resemble "story" features on Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook, and Twitter users are now complaining that they did not need this layout on this platform as well. Instead, many would rather be able to edit their tweets.
Twitter users have been begging for an edit function for years so that they can correct spelling errors or typos after the fact. While some say that an edit feature would allow Twitter users to re-write history on their accounts, others suggest that Twitter would simply need to notify readers when a tweet had been edited. Other forums and blogs have features along these lines, and as a "micro-blogging" site, Twitter seems prime for its introduction.
That thing you didn’t Tweet but wanted to but didn’t but got so close but then were like nah.
We have a place for that now—Fleets!
Rolling out to everyone starting today. pic.twitter.com/auQAHXZMfH— Twitter (@Twitter) November 17, 2020
Instead, Twitter users got fleets, which are now arrayed at the top of the mobile app. Fleets can include media or graphic text, and serve as an informal place to put media you may not want to leave online permanently. Similar features have proven extremely popular starting on Snapchat, then on Instagram and Facebook, but some Twitter users say they do not want the platform to become identical to its competition.
For better or worse, it looks like fleets are here to stay. Here is a look at what Twitter users are saying about the new feature, and the functions they would rather have instead.
Please!— Kristen Doerschner (@KrisDoerschner) November 17, 2020
Twitter users: Can we have an edit button?
Twitter: Here, we moved the "create post" button?
Users: But can we edit?
Twitter: We changed how your timeline appears.
Users: Edit button, please?
Twitter: Here's a stories feature no one one asked for.
Many Twitter critics added fleets to the list of features they did not ask for. Twitter has changed its layout many times since users began begging for an "edit" button, and still there is nothing.prevnext
Jfc even excel will have stories soon enough pic.twitter.com/BaBRxmtiwh— Bran (@CryptoBran_) November 17, 2020
Some commenters joked about the proliferation of "Story" style features, wondering if more and more software would continue to add them. One Photoshopped graphic even showed how Microsoft Excel would look with Stories.prevnext
Everybody: “Damn twitter got stories now, why don’t they give us a edit button?
Twitter: pic.twitter.com/9Z3JNC2rfd— Norman Dale (@_CoachHill) November 17, 2020
Twitter users have been asking for an edit button for so long that many now interpret the company's silence on the topic as indifference. They joked that Twitter will never humor this request, no matter what.prevnext
Oh yeah this would go well, people editing tweets to misrepresent what people have sent https://t.co/MTkTkdbSEz— Rhythm of Zat Knight (@93rdmin) November 17, 2020
The button is the easy part... keeping everything in sync as it's replicated across thousands of copies of databases on thousands of servers across the world is the hard part... You think Twitter is glitchy now? It would be a mess me thinks.— 𝓩𝓪𝓹𝓱𝓸𝓭 𝓑𝓮𝓮𝓫𝓵𝓮𝓫𝓻𝓸𝔁 (@ZaphodBeeblbrx) November 17, 2020
Many people argued that an edit function on Twitter would only increase the spread of misinformation on the platform, though others thought that there was a way to do it right. The debates sometimes became extremely technical among those with knowledge about software development.prevnext
all yall are asking for an edit button but some of us dont need one bc we never make mistaeks 😌— BEgel BiTeS⁷ (@BagelBites) November 17, 2020
As always, brand accounts got in on the fun as "edit button" became a trending topic on Tuesday. Many tried to joke about the idea while staying neutral on fleets.prevnext
y’all need to let the edit button go cause imagine you rt something and they change it to some foul ass shite pic.twitter.com/b9nV2lDspq— tpt🩰❦ (@loudhijabi) November 17, 2020
As tempting as an edit button sounds, some users were fearful of how that would impact their retweets if it were really implemented. To make it clear, Twitter would need to notify readers that a tweet had been edited before it had been retweeted.prevnext
For all the users that complained about fleets in their tweets, plenty more complained about fleets within the fleets themselves. Some used the new feature for the first time to reprimand Twitter for taking so long to add an edit button.prev