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Twitter Tests New Layout for Images, Considers Adding Limited Time Tweet Editing

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This could be interesting – Twitter is currently experimenting with a new image format, which would take up the whole horizontal space in-stream, eliminating the current, rounded borders on your photos.

Twitter visual update

As you can see in this example, shared by reverse engineering expert Jane Manchun Wong, the new layout stretches the whole width of the feed, which, really, gives it a bit more of a Facebook vibe, but it does look better than the current tweet image presentation.

And apparently, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey agrees. He posted this response to Wong’s original tweet sharing her discovery.

Which is a tacit confirmation that it is coming, which could be an important change to note for your tweeted images and processes, to ensure that you maximize the extra width, when it becomes available.

On another front, Twitter’s also given users some new hope around tweet editing, with Product Lead Kayvon Beykpour posing this question in a tweet poll.

Twitter’s been talking about this possible addition for years, with Dorsey himself explaining how it might work in an interview with Joe Rogan in 2019.

So when you send a tweet it goes to the world instantaneously. You can’t take it back. You could build it as such so maybe we introduce a 5-second to 30-second delay in the sending. And within that window, you can edit. The issue with going longer than that is it takes that real-time nature of the conversational flow out of it”

Beykpour is talking minutes with this new iteration, but the idea is the same, which could become a possible addition for its Twitter Blue subscription offering that’s currently available to users in Canada and Australia. 

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Twitter Blue already offers an ‘undo send’ option, which enables users to retract their sent tweets within up to 30 seconds of posting. Would editing, within a broader time limit, enhance the option even more?

In some ways, it’s interesting to see Twitter continuing to explore new ideas for its monetization tools, but in others, it does feel like it’s throwing up every idea that it can, in the hope that at least a few things stick. Just last year, Dorsey said that tweet editing wasn’t coming, which seemed to be the end of it – but the fact that it’s now resurrecting that discussion seems like, maybe Twitter’s running out of ideas to entice people to pay for its stuff.

Or maybe, it’s just going to leave no stone left unturned. The platform’s management is under pressure to improve its results, after years of relative stagnation, and it’s set some ambitious growth targets that it likely needs to meet – or it’s quite possible that Dorsey and Co. will be ousted by the company board.

Maybe, then, Twitter needs to throw the kitchen sink at its new subscription tools. And maybe, possibly, tweet editing could be the key lure that gets more people in.

Either way, it likely doesn’t suggest that people are flocking to Twitter Blue just yet.

And finally, Twitter has also added a new auto captions option for voice tweets.

Remember those two days when voice tweets were a thing, then everybody forgot that they even existed? Well they still serve elements of Twitter’s user base, and captions will provide another way to facilitate expanded usage. 

Socialmediatoday.com

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Ahead of World Cup, influencer ‘Mr Q’ lifts veil on Qatar

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Khalifa Al Haroon, known to his followers as Mr Q, has become a social media hit by partially lifting the veil on World Cup host Qatar

Khalifa Al Haroon, known to his followers as Mr Q, has become a social media hit by partially lifting the veil on World Cup host Qatar – Copyright AFP KARIM JAAFAR

Raphaelle Peltier

At a time when prickly questions are being asked about Qatar and its hosting of the World Cup, Khalifa Al Haroon offers a smile, a sigh and a shrug as he seeks to explain its mysteries.

Known to his growing number of followers as Mr Q, the 38-year-old has become a social media hit by partially lifting the veil over the tiny but mega-rich Gulf state that describes itself as a “conservative” Islamic country.

The first World Cup in an Arab nation has put a spotlight on Qatar’s treatment of foreign workers, gender rights and even the use of air conditioning in stadiums.

Haroon’s cheerful #QTip videos broach everything from saying “Hello” in Arabic to the right way for men to wear the flowing ghutra headdress. There is also an edition on labour rights.

With less than 60 days to the November 20 start of the tournament, he now has more than 100,000 followers on Instagram and more than 115,000 on YouTube. And the numbers keep growing.

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Qatar has dozens of online influencers on topics ranging from “modest” but expensive fashion, to the latest sports car being imported into what is now one of the world’s wealthiest nations.

Haroon carved out his niche by elucidating Qatar’s unknowns to its growing expat community — and now the hordes of football fans expected for the World Cup.

Haroon — who was born to a Qatari father and British mother and spent 16 years in Bahrain — said he was first confronted by global stereotypes about Qatar and the Middle East while studying for a law degree in Britain.

He had wanted to become an actor, but instead launched his social media presence in 2008 with a blog.

“I was in the perfect position because I was a Qatari who has never lived properly in Qatar,” he said.

– ‘Trust your own eyes’ –

“In essence, I was like a foreigner in my own country and so I had the same questions that foreigners did, and so it just made it easy for me to start putting together information.”

Haroon said there has to be a distinction between “negative news” and misinformation about his country.

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“When it comes to fake news, obviously, I think everybody understands that it’s not true and so the only thing that I could do is show people videos and pictures and show them what we’re really like because you can trust your own eyes.”

Some people, he said, have told him they decided to move to Qatar after watching his videos.

Haroon, who is now a consultant to the Qatar Football Association and an eSports entrepreneur, said he is excited about the World Cup “because people can now come here and experience it for themselves and make their own judgements instead of just believing what’s written”.

His main grouse is how outsiders see something negative about Qatar and then believe that all Qataris “accept it or we all agree with it”.

Many supporters of the 31 foreign countries who will play in Qatar have raised concerns, however, about the welcome awaiting them. Can they drink? And what will happen to same-sex couples in a country where homosexuality is illegal?

The government has insisted that beer, normally restricted, will be available and that everyone is welcome. Haroon wants outsiders to experience “real Qatari hospitality”, with its food and coffee culture.

“Of course there are going to be certain social norms,” said Haroon. “What we are asking for is just respect the country. And of course the country will definitely be respecting everyone that comes.”

“Some people might make mistakes because they don’t know what the rules are and that’s OK,” he added.

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“The point is our culture is all about intention, our religion is about intention, so as long as you have good intentions and you want to do the right thing, you have nothing to worry about.”

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