Bloomberg reports that Twitter will soon tweak how it counts up to each tweet’s 140-character limit, and will begin excluding photos and links from the allowance. Think of all the extra things you’ll be able to say about the subway creep-shot you’re tweeting!
Links and photo currently take up 23 characters, regardless of their actual counts. This is because URLs are shortened via Twitter’s t.co link shortener, even though the beginning of the real URL is displayed in tweets. The same goes for photos linked via pic.twitter.com.
Regaining 23 characters isn’t that much, but the news is further indication of Twitter’s slowly shifting how its feed functions — tweets as an entry point to larger pieces of content, like videos and longer pieces of writing, rather than self-contained 140-character missives.
For the better part of a year, rumors have persisted that the company wants to get rid of the character limit altogether. Those reports, however, indicated that the feed would be visually similar to how it looks now, with short snippets of text and multimedia attachments. Users would then be able to click to expand anything they wanted further info on.
For now, though, it means users have 23 additional characters, exactly as many characters as the phrase “I really love to tweet!” requires.