Twitter plans to let you hide old tweets
Twitter plans to let you hide old tweets

Twitter plans to test new privacy-related features that will give users more control over the list of followers and who can see tweets and likes, so people can interact and share more easily on social media.

These tools relate to what platform executives refer to as “social privacy,” or how users manage reputation and identity across the service.

This includes information such as a person's follower list, favorite tweets, and whether their account is public or private.

Envisioned features include the ability to edit the subscriber list and a tool to archive old tweets so that they are no longer visible to others after a user-specified period of time.

For people who don't want their tweets to stay online, hiding previous tweets can be a common feature compared to manually deleting or searching for old tweets to find tweets you don't want to send, which is an easier solution.

“Internal studies have shown that many users of the platform do not understand the basics of data protection,” said Svetlana Pimkina, a researcher at the company. These users have fewer interactions on social media because they don't know what others can see.

"When social privacy needs are not met, people limit their expression," she added. They withdrew from the conversation. Twitter launches in September and is asking people to check if their accounts are public or private.

The company's privacy team designs a variety of products to help reduce user uncertainty. Some will be tested soon, others are in the conceptual stage.

Twitter plans to let you hide old tweets

List of possible products:

  •     Tweet Archive: The platform can allow users to hide old tweets after a certain period of time. Tweets are visible to account holders. But not to others. The company is considering a number of timing options, including hiding tweets after 30, 60 and 90 days, or hiding tweets after a full year. The product has no release date and is still in the pregnancy stage.
  •     Remove subscribers - Users will be able to remove subscribers soon. The platform plans to test this feature starting this month.
  •     Hide favorite tweets: Users can quickly decide who can see their favorite tweets. There is no timetable for testing this feature.
  •     Exit the conversation: Users can remove themselves from public conversations across the platform. Twitter plans to test this feature later this year.

Part of the platform's motivation is that reps often see users come up with creative solutions because these features don't exist, like blocking and unblocking people to remove them from subscribers.

Many other users either delete old tweets manually or switch between public and private accounts depending on what they post.

Archived tweets can help alleviate fears that old tweets will resurface when they are looking for a new job, applying to college, or running for political office.

The platform has always been open to product roadmap and often features not yet fully released to be tested. But also conceptually, the company presented several ideas that either didn't get implemented or took longer than expected.

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