Fresh on the heels of a new standalone app and increased video length to 140 seconds, Twitter announced today another bold new feature: stickers.
Yes, stickers! The stickers will rotate in and out (a technique that has worked well for Snapchat’s facial filters) and include “hundreds of accessories, emoji, and props to make your photos more fun,” according to the company’s blog. “Use them to share what you’re doing or how you’re feeling, to show support for a cause, or to just add some flair. You can use multiple stickers on a photo, resize and rotate them, and place them anywhere on your picture.” Boy, this feels like … Snapchat!
The most interesting thing about the update isn’t that your timeline will now be filled with cartoon champagne bottles and snorkels, but rather that Twitter will allow users to search by sticker. If you tap on a specific sticker, you’ll be redirected to a new timeline full of tweets from people also using that sticker, likely for a wide range of reasons. (Just think of the think-piece opportunities!) It’s similar to Instagram’s search by emoji option, a.k.a. the platform’s easiest way to find NSFW content. And it also bears a resemblance to Facebook Messenger’s search feature, which started with the app’s stickers and later evolved into GIFs and now lets users search for GIFs based on keywords and phrases, like “happy,” or “get me the hell out of here.”
While stickers might seems like child’s play, they are also likely a smart move for Twitter, which hasn’t been doing super hot of late. It gives users a reason to spend more time engaging with the app and, frankly, seem kind of fun. (Who doesn’t love an opportunity to plaster pictures with completely irreverent stickers?) And any time Twitter can get users (who aren’t weirdos in media already spending their lives online) to spend on the platform is a good move.