The Twitter favorite, the star, is dead.
Twitter has decided to swap favorites for "likes" and stars for hearts on both its main platform and on Vine. Now, Twitter's three main properties – Twitter proper, Vine, and Periscope – will all use hearts to signal agreement, interest, solidarity, etc with a post.
"We are changing our star icon for favorites to a heart and we’ll be calling them likes. 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," says Twitter
"The heart, in contrast, is a universal symbol that resonates across languages, cultures, and time zones. The heart is more expressive, enabling you to convey a range of emotions and easily connect with people. And in our tests, we found that people loved it."
Users are very familiar with he concept of a heart, from both Tumblr and Instagram. And as for "likes", well we're all pretty used to giving out those.
— Twitter (@twitter) November 3, 2015
The one thing about favoriting tweets with a star is that people used the feature to bookmark, or save tweets. You might not "like" the tweet – in fact you may hate it and disagree vehemently – but you might still fav it in order to preserve it, in a way.
But Twitter's right in saying the heart icon and "liking" is more universal. And if we know anything about Twitter's latest strategy to get more people using Twitter, it's a desire to be more universal.