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Twitter Social Networks News Technology

Twitter's Timeline Option Puts Important Tweets Up Top (engadget.com) 46

Twitter is doing its best to make sure you see the best content in your timeline (at least thats what its hoping its doing with today's announcement of a new timeline option). The new feature drops what Twitter determines are the best tweets at the top of a user's timeline. For now, this feature is optional, so users can opt-in to see this timeline. In the coming weeks, it will slowly be rolled out to all users.
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Twitter's Timeline Option Puts Important Tweets Up Top

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  • Yes it'll be opt-out eventually, but (as someone who's definitely keeping this feature off) I'm not convinced that this isn't what a majority of users want. Vocal power-users who use it to keep close contact with friends, sure, but those aren't a majority. I'm pretty sure that important stories and world-news stories are going to keep getting enough likes to keep them on top.

    It would be really nice if there was a feature to display all tweets from specific users, and only high ranked ones from other users

    • Yes it'll be opt-out eventually,

      Will it? Will it be "opt out" like Yahoo's "important posts" in Yahoo Groups are "opt out"? I'm referring to the ads that show up mixed in with the actual group messages.

      I'm pretty sure that important stories and world-news stories are going to keep getting enough likes to keep them on top.

      I'm sorry, but if I'm not following someone or something, I don't want to see their twits ever. I don't care if a million strangers all vote up a twit telling them about cheap viagra, I don't want to see it, and it isn't important. And don't dismiss the idea that if voting up twits makes them show up on more screens that twit-spammers won't

      • people still use yahoo groups?
      • by Sowelu ( 713889 )

        No, this system doesn't inject new stuff. It reorganizes people you already follow. If you use Twitter to follow a bajillion human rights or news feeds (like a big part of their userbase), it means you'll mostly see the stuff with a lot of likes up top, and junk tweets with no info probably won't spam you. If you don't follow them you won't see them, aside from the sponsored stuff, and everybody's gotta make a living.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      There seem to be (mostly) two types of social media users: those who like/subscribe/follow everything that moves, and those that use it to keep track of specific topics or groups and have relatively few follows.
      For the first group, a curated timeline might make more sense. There is a lot of garbage out there, and sorting through hundreds of posts a day is too much work to be done manually for most people. On the other hand, for people who only get a small amount of new content pushed to them daily, screwin
  • by QuietLagoon ( 813062 ) on Wednesday February 10, 2016 @03:28PM (#51481095)
    ... and facebook doesn't do it well. I constantly have to view my friends' pages directly to see what's going on because facebook's algorithm prioritizes the wrong posts onto my page.

    Maybe twitter will be able to do better at reading my mind to determine what I want to read, maybe not.

    So long as I can disable it, I'm fine with it for now.

    • by buchner.johannes ( 1139593 ) on Wednesday February 10, 2016 @03:30PM (#51481127) Homepage Journal

      Facebook knows what is best for you. Stop trying to break out of that bubble.

    • by ColaMan ( 37550 )

      I change my facebook page from 'Top Stories' to 'Most Recent' on a regular basis. It used to be that it would remember that setting consistently...... then, strangely enough, it would start to revert to 'Top Stories' randomly.

      This also happened right about the time a little reminder got inserted at the top of the page saying that I was viewing, 'Most Recent' and did I want to go back to 'Top Stories'? No facebook, I do not, because all I tend to get is a shitty post from three days ago with 50 likes from f

    • If they carry on like this in ten years we'll remember Twitter the same way we remember Yahoo now
  • What's the over/under on Slashdot incorporating a timeline on its front page?
    • a little more likely than the odds of Bernie Sanders defeating Donald Trump for the presidential election.

  • by Kunedog ( 1033226 ) on Wednesday February 10, 2016 @03:33PM (#51481161)
    This is not about "important" tweets any more than the "Trust and Safety Council" is about "harrassment" or "trolling." It's about controlling which content everyone is allowed to see (i.e. making it more like television).
    • by Mashiki ( 184564 )

      Yep, and they're starting to hemorrhage users. Lot of theories floating around on financial forums and blogs that Jack is doing this deliberately to tank twitter so it can be bought out by someone. There are a few problems with that idea for twitter in general, there have been no takers. The tech market bubble is now popping...again...and there are a lot of people in the SF tech triangle that are no longer getting VC money, and they're worried. It's all dried up in the last few weeks as the stock market

  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Wednesday February 10, 2016 @03:37PM (#51481203) Journal
    How can this feature exist when 'important tweet' is somewhere between 'theoretical' and 'logically impossible', and definitely not easy to find in the wild?
  • "Important" tweets (Score:5, Insightful)

    by russotto ( 537200 ) on Wednesday February 10, 2016 @03:37PM (#51481205) Journal
  • It's not a feature.

    It's a bug.

    We Said Edit!

    Listen to your users. Don't insult them.

    • by Sowelu ( 713889 )

      Edit is such a terrible idea. Twitter is used for breaking news. The risk of people posting incorrect information is outweighed by the risk of the historical record being modified.

  • "Important tweets", and it's said with a straight face as if such a thing actually exists.

    "Important tweets" are like "important theological questions"....they basically don't exist, although I'd bet there are definitely tweets that are more important than any theological question.

  • it's fun watching tech/social companies implode, where do they get this stuff?

    Q: we have to be more relevant, stats show we're lagging, ideas?
    A: yeah, let's do something stupid that no one will like, we can get away with it for awhile because we're leaders in our domain.

    Hello uber surge pricing, hello facebook targeted ads/privacy, hello paypal 6 month buyer protection, etc.
    At least google is at least paying attention a little, goodbye plus.
  • I don't want algorithms deciding what's important to me, but I would like something that filters out duplicate (or near duplicate) posts. I like using twitter as a kind of RSS feed, but I'm tired of media outlets retweeting the same stuff, several times an hour, all day long. I could probably get through my feed in half the time if all that spam was filtered out.

  • by wonkey_monkey ( 2592601 ) on Wednesday February 10, 2016 @04:10PM (#51481447) Homepage

    at least thats what its hoping its doing

    Come ooooon.

  • As long as you can opt out it's fine by me but I'm not convinced this'll be an option in the long run.
    One thing that gives me some hope is that Twitter is not as populas as Facebook so they're more likely to turn around decisions that most users dislike
  • If the strictly chronological order disappears, so will all those users who need time-based stuff like weather, live event tweeting, etc.

The reason why worry kills more people than work is that more people worry than work.