Those changes to the Twitter timeline that everyone has been talking about for the past week or so may not be quite as bad as they sound.
You may have heard (or noticed) that Twitter was starting to show favorites in the timeline, similar to how it shows retweets. The company also updated its help documentation to say:
Additionally, when we identify a Tweet, an account to follow, or other content that’s popular or relevant, we may add it to your timeline. This means you will sometimes see Tweets from accounts you don’t follow. We select each Tweet using a variety of signals, including how popular it is and how people in your network are interacting with it. Our goal is to make your home timeline even more relevant and interesting.
Twitter has been fairly vague about just what it is that people see, but it sounds like you don’t have to worry about flooding your followers’ timelines with all your favorites. It’s not that simple.
Kurt Wagner at Re/code reports:
Sources familiar with the update say Twitter’s algorithm searches for popular tweets in your “social graph,” marked by actions like favorites and retweets. But it’s not showing you those tweets specifically because of one of your pal’s actions — it’s showing it to you because lots of your pals have shown interest in that tweet.
This means that every tweet you favorite won’t appear in someone else’s feed — it would require engagement from a number of other people, too.
Okay, that’s not quite so bad. It might still not be what some users want, but it sounds less intrusive and annoying than what some feared.
Image via Wikimedia Commons