When Twitter first started, users we would curate a list of interesting people to follow and would periodically scan our Twitter feed to see what was being posted. As the network effect drove growth of the service (more users makes it more valuable and therefore attracts even more users) the amount of interesting people to follow became a problem. Browsing one big thread with hundreds of tweets on twitter.com on the mobile app was no longer an efficient use of time. On top of that, we were missing out on all the great content being posted by people we didn’t follow. At this point, we had to get a better Twitter client, like Tweet Deck. It let us setup a bunch of threads based on searches and let us manage having more than one Twitter account. Now that we can DM anyone, following someone doesn’t really matter much anymore. It’s the hashtags that matter matter more.
Twitter is trying to become one big forum. Hashtags and searches are like categories. Conversation are like threads. It doesn’t allow us to compose long-form messages but I bet this feature will be introduced in the next few years.
Once again online conversations are tending to their natural ideal state: a forum.
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