8 Responses

  1. Vegard Sandvold
    Vegard Sandvold March 2, 2009 at 13:15 |

    I like the idea of counting URLs outside the 140 character limit on Twitter messages. Short URLs are neither user-friendly nor SEO-friendly. It’s a need born out of technological limitations (and in this case artificial limitations). And they make us very vulnerable to phishing and spam.

    Like you’re suggesting; let’s attach URLs as metadata on each tweet, freeing up some space for more meaningful words, without obfuscating the original, possibly keyword-rich URLs.

  2. Jo Ring Giske
    Jo Ring Giske March 2, 2009 at 13:59 |

    Another advantage is that you could have an anchortext as well. This would make it easy to make a meaningful Tweet with many links. Today it just looks garbled.

  3. Ben Rosenthal
    Ben Rosenthal March 13, 2009 at 18:06 |

    If URLs are separated out from the 140 characters of the tweet itself, how will people post them from a cell phone? The 140 character limit is based on the limitations of SMS, isn’t it? Should a second text be sent containing a URL that is then “reattached” to the original tweet?

    I don’t know how popular it is to tweet by SMS, but that is still part of the Twitter userbase.

  4. Preben Liland Madsen
    Preben Liland Madsen April 16, 2009 at 07:16 |

    The idea is very good, and I’ve thought about it myself. But the links would still need to be counted towards the 140 character limit to avoid flooding or spamming or simply avoid people going around the 140 char limit by creating “fake” urls like; http://andbtwIwantedToSayThisButCouldntGetItInsideMyTweetILoveCake.com/ILoveCookiesaswell

    I think there would be necessary to create both a limit to how many urls there could be in a tweet (for example 3 urls) aswell as having all the urls (no matter how long or short they were) count as 10 chars.

    It may aswell (if possible) be a smart idea for Twitter to check whether the main domain in the post actually exists or not. With “main domain”; I think about youtube.com, tinyurl.com, google.com and “andbtwIwantedToSayThisButCouldntGetItInsideMyTweetILoveCake.com”. If Twitter could check if the main domain actually were used or owned by somone it could then determine whether or not the link provided should be provided with the advantages of posting a url (all urls just take up 10 chars) to the tweet or not.

  5. Preben Liland Madsen
    Preben Liland Madsen April 16, 2009 at 08:36 |

    Yes, I’m aware of the fact that long urls of course wouldn’t be displayed fully in the tweet. I think the best way to do it would be an icon. However, any “hidden” messages would still be seeable when hovering the text aswell as looking at the url when you see the urls doesn’t take you to a existing web page.

    But as you do mention, the possibillity of it becoming a problem is not necessarily a big one, but I think Twitter would need to think of all possibillites where a new feature like this one could be a problem.

    Anyway, there need to be some way to stop that way of abusing from happening, maybe aswell have a limit to how long a url could be. Although that of course could be a problem aswell in some rare cases.

    I’m sure this discussion will prove useful, and I hope someone will write the ideas into an e-mail which can be sent to the Twitter developers, providing our ideas for it – so it can save them time, so they don’t have to think about everything if they want to make it.

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