Social Media

Why did Twitter have a change of heart?

Twitter has decided to change the well-known star icon representing a “favourite” to a heart and are renaming them “likes”.

In a statement on their blog Twitter claims that the use of a heart will make the application “easier and more rewarding to use” as “the star could sometimes be confusing, especially to newcomers”. Given that Twitter’sgrowth has slowed in comparison to other social platforms, the move to appeal to new users is unsurprising. Twitter Product Manager Akarshan Kumar (@akik) goes on to say:

“You might like a lot of things, but not everything can be your favourite.”

This may be true, however, a large amount of Twitter users are quite fond of the favourite star. ‘#TwitterHeart’ is trending on Twitter and users are making their opinions known, with one user saying “No. Not happy with#TwitterHeart. They don't convey what I meant by #TwitterStar”[sic]Source. There are a number of Tweets stating the dislike towards the Twitter heart and many are asking for it to be changed back to the star.

A universal symbol

Twitter believes that the heart “is a universal symbol that resonates across languages, cultures, and time zones”, but existing users are not convinced and are concerned about the similarities between Twitter and other social media platforms.

“Twitter just couldn’t decide.. whether to copy Facebook or Instagram.. Hence.. #TwitterHeart” - @aniyuvi

“This is TWITTER not Facebook or Instagram #TwitterHeart” -@ItsHafsaMalik

Despite the outrage, some users don’t care whether it’s a heart or a star and think that Twitter should focus on creating an edit button, a long sought after feature that would allow users to edit previously published tweets.

Looking back

Some Twitter users are saying that if they want to look back at a Tweet they will have no choice but to like it. Favouriting was a way to archive Tweets without liking them, but it could be argued that the word favourite has positive connotations too? We personally think that it could be a bookmark icon so people can find tweets they were interested in without having to say how they feel about them.

Let us know your views on this and if you are team #TwitterHeart or #TwitterStar.

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