After successful testing, we can now post messages and posts on Twitter worldwide that disappear after 24 hours. Although the Twitter Fleets have a different intention than the well-known stories, the differences are small. Let’s have a look at the function.
Facebook, Instagram and Co. have successfully copied the stories originally from Snapchat. Especially with Instagram, the function is extremely well received because it is like a playground for snapshots and spontaneous short videos.
Twitter has also experimented with stories in the past months. The short news service tested the so-called Twitter Fleets in Brazil, Italy, India and South Korea.
The test was so successful that Twitter now makes the new function available worldwide. Users can now post messages and posts that self-destruct after 24 hours.
What are Twitter Fleets?
Twitter Fleets allow users to share photos, videos and texts. Soon, as with Instagram, stickers and live broadcasts will be added.
The word creation Fleets stands for “fleeting tweets”. They appear in their own timeline above the permanently received tweets.
Fleets destroy themselves after 24 hours so that users can share fleeting thoughts and do not have to worry about receiving them. You can’t retweet or link them either.
Product manager Kayvon Beykpour explains that, like Instagram, you can only respond to fleets with a direct message.
What is the goal of the Fleets?
Twitter pursues several goals with the fleets. For example, users who are new to the platform should be able to find their way around more quickly, as they already know the structure from Instagram and Co.
The company also wants to lower the threshold for shy users to post messages. In the test runs, Twitter has noticed that new and reluctant users have responded well to the fleets.
So the fleets are designed to promote communication. Twitter is apparently hoping to use them to generate more interaction again.
“If you were new to Twitter, the Fleets were an easier way to share what you were thinking about,” say Twitter Product Manager Sam Haveson and Design Director Joshua Harris.
Because fleets disappear from view after a day, people find it easier to share personal and fleeting thoughts, opinions and feelings.
How the community reacts to Twitter Fleets
However, the community does not take a unanimously positive view of the Twitter Fleets. Long-time users in particular react with mockery.
German TV presenter and DJ Jan Köppen, for example, asks: “Twitter now with stories, Insta with guides and stores. Don’t we just want to bundle all that and call it Internet?”
And Titanic editor-in-chief Moritz Hürtgen also mocks the new feature: “Think about presenting my best fleets to the Instagram audience as well.
Another user writes that the fleets would cause stagnating likes. This could be a legitimate concern if users focus more on watching fleets. However, the self-destructive contributions are not an alternative to the normal tweets.
So we should wait and see how user behavior on Twitter changes.
Does every social network really need stories now?
In addition to Instagram, WhatsApp and LinkedIn, for example, have integrated the Stories feature. But does every social network really need stories now? If you look at the reactions of Twitter users, the answer to this question is probably “no”.
Twitter in particular, as a short message service, should concentrate on the same messages. And for messages it does not need a self-destructive function. However, Twitter seems to be moving further and further away from its original motive and wants to keep up with other networks.
If the trend continues, in a few years (or months) every social network will look the same. Then the unique selling points of the individual platforms will disappear. And why should we still be active in several networks then?