Twitter made a change to the favorites icon, which is now represented by a heart. Citing the reason for the move, the micro-blogging firm said it will make the platform more intuitive for new users. Despite the clarification, the idea of replacing the star left many puzzled.
Not many in favor
In a statement on their website on Tuesday, Twitter said, “We want to make Twitter easier and more rewarding to use, and we know that at times the star could be confusing, especially to newcomers. You might like a lot of things, but not everything can be your favorite.”
“Favorites” on Twitter conveyed many meanings. There was “hate fave” that was used for favoriting something that the user did not like. Then there was a flirty “fave,” and the most useful of them was “fave,” which was meant to indicate that a user has that someone replied to their tweet but that this marks the end of conversation/discussion. It is not known whether the “heart” will hold all of those use cases.
The change comes as a surprise, and this is visible from the way the press and users reacted to the announcement. The switch received comments from haters, jokesters, and armchair UX critics, and most of them shared a common sentiment that Twitter does not understand its users.
Change could work for Twitter
While on one hand, Facebook is offering its users a wide range of icons and moods to express themselves, Twitter, on the other hand, is limiting the reactions of its users to feel-good ones only. The current Twitter users might be disappointed to know that this change has been made to attract new users and not for the existing users.
However, Nate Clinton, director of product strategy at Cooper design firm, believes the move makes sense as the micro-blogging firm has a “history of changing their product to reflect emergent user behavior, and that’s been good for them.” Clinton said the entire story here is about acquiring new users, and Twitter has been struggling to add new users even with its newly appointed celebrity CEO Jack Dorsey.
This is an interesting shift, and it seems as if Twitter is trying to build a Facebook-like model for its network. However, the fact is that Facebook is a much larger platform and is reportedly working on moving beyond the like and dislike buttons.