Is Twitter in trouble?

February 14, 2016

There have been several articles about the impending demise of Twitter recently following it’s disappointing financial results and stalling user growth.

From a purely selfish perspective, I hope these reports are wrong. I love Twitter. Of all the social media platforms I use (or have used) it’s the one I enjoy most.

Whilst Facebook is good for seeing what friends are up to and Instagram is a really clean way of seeing visual content, I use Twitter as a launchpad to current, interesting and engaging content from both friends, organisations and idols.

The informality of Twitter means it’s acceptable to follow anybody, whether you know them or not, allowing you access to such a wide range of opinions and content. I think this is one of Twitter’s biggest draws; the fact that there is always something new to find and explore. It’s an easy to skim, collated stream of everything I’m interested in.

The micro-blogging, timely nature of each post is a further attraction. I find Twitter to be one of the best sources for the most recent news, especially as it means I can see how multiple sources are portraying an event. It’s also an interesting way to discuss and debate (something the UX community  does a lot) ideas in an open forum. Although the 140 character limit can be frustrating on occasion, it does promote that important skill of being able to craft and communicate arguments in a succinct manner.

Yes Twitter has it’s issues, and I’m not suggesting it shouldn’t evolve and adapt to improve. However, I think the team behind Twitter should think really carefully before changing some of the fundamental features that made it such an innovative and unique platform.

P.S. I don’t think Twitter should take too much heed of certain industry commentators on their current situation. Here’s what Dave Lee, a BBC Technology Reporter, recently wrote:

Big changes are needed, but the remaining 307 million active users may not like it. Perhaps it’s time to ignore users and just get to work.

Surely this would risk a further fall in the number of users?