Tweetstorms

Edit: two hours after publishing this, Twitter announced tweetstorm functionality (‘Threads’). Good to see they’re reading the blog… šŸ˜‰

I wasn’t a fan of Twitter’s recent decision to raise the limits in tweets to 280 characters from the tried and trusted 140. And a cursory review of the variousĀ  online comments shows that I was far from alone. But today I’m happy to say I was wrong – but not in the way I was expecting

Sure, it’s easier to write tweets these days with the extra room, particularly if you’re quoting from an article in the tweet. That’s not always a good thing. But I think one of the real benefits is actually being seen in some of the more reasoned, multi-part tweets that we’re seeing these days.

Tweetstorms have always split opinions. I remember being asked to take part by CNN in a debate on the future of Bitcoin a few years back and rubbing someone up the wrong way with my multiple answers (“Does he not know how to use Twitter?”). Trouble was, I just had too much to say on the topic. Nothing changed there I guess…

Still, that’s about the only time I’ve done it. The first time I ever heard of them as a defined concept I think was (like many things) back on Fred Wilson’s blog. But the interesting thing to me is that, somewhat counterintuitively, the value of the best tweetstorms to me has increased in line with the available characters.

Now, Twitter is hugely subjective. Maybe I’m just following folk who are good at it (or good at sharing those who are). But it feels like an unexpected step forwards in the value of Twitter for me.

And on that basis, here’s my favourite of the year so far. There’s so much wisdom in this one collection of tweets that I don’t know where to start – other than to say: read it. For non-Twitter users, click on the tweet below to read all 25 connected parts.

There are many more but other notable mentions includeĀ Marc Andreessen (pre-280, who actually coined the phrase ‘tweetstorm’) and Taylor Pearson.

I’m intrigued to see that Twitter is actively looking into how to make these kind of tweetstorms far easier. If it helps unique and/or eloquent thinkers to easily share information in a way that rewards quality, I for one will be in favour.