Twitter Says It’s Testing the Much-Awaited ‘Edit’ Button As Elon Musk Joins Board

Twitter tweeted Tuesday that it’s certainly engaged on a method for customers to edit their 280-character messages, though it says the challenge has nothing to do with the incontrovertible fact that edit-function fan Elon Musk was simply revealed as the firm’s largest shareholder and now sits on its board.

Twitter mentioned it can check the function in its paid service, Twitter Blue, in the coming months. It mentioned the check would assist it “learn what works, what doesn’t, and what’s possible.” So it might be some time earlier than most Twitter customers get to make use of it, in the event that they ever do. Twitter spokesperson Catherine Hill declined to say whether or not an edit function could be rolled out for all customers.

Many Twitter customers — amongst them, Kim Kardashian, Ice T, Katy Perry and McDonald’s company account — have lengthy begged for an edit button. The corporate itself just lately teased customers with an April Idiot’s Day tweet saying “we are working on an edit button.” The official Twitter account mentioned Tuesday that the April 1 tweet wasn’t a joke and that it has been engaged on it since final yr.

Twitter additionally mentioned it did not get the concept from a Twitter poll launched by Tesla CEO Musk Monday night. Musk, himself a Twitter energy person, requested followers in the event that they wished an edit button, cheekily misspelling “yes” as “yse” and “no” as “on.” Greater than 4 million individuals had voted as of Tuesday night.

Musk additionally tweeted that he’s wanting ahead to creating “significant improvements to Twitter in coming months!”

Twitter’s vice chairman of shopper product, Jay Sullivan, tweeted Tuesday that an edit operate has for years been Twitter’s most requested new function, noting that folks wish to repair errors, typos, and “hot takes.”

Former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey had mentioned that Twitter had thought of an edit button, however in a January 2020 Q&A maintained that “we’ll probably never do it.” He famous that Twitter’s present setup retains the spirit of its text-message origins — texts cannot be edited — and the confusion that would end result from customers making adjustments to a tweet that has already been closely circulated by others. Dorsey stepped down as CEO in November 2021.

Individuals who examine Twitter additionally say including an edit button would seemingly change the nature of Twitter, making it much less worthwhile as a historic warehouse that shops official statements by politicians and different high-profile individuals. Twitter, for higher or worse, “has become the de facto news wire,” mentioned Jennifer Grygiel, a Syracuse College communications professor and an professional on social media who researches propaganda.

Tweets are sometimes embedded in information tales, which might trigger issues if the customers edit essential or controversial tweets with out leaving proof of the authentic assertion. Grygiel instructed as an alternative giving Twitter customers a window of time to edit their tweets earlier than they publish them.

Letting highly effective Twitter customers edit their tweets means they’d not be historic statements anymore, Grygiel mentioned. “We need to think about what the implications are, what these tweets are, who has power.”

The corporate acknowledged these issues Tuesday night when Sullivan tweeted: “Without things like time limits, controls, and transparency about what has been edited, Edit could be misused to alter the record of the public conversation. Protecting the integrity of that public conversation is our top priority when we approach this work.”

Musk, too, had mentioned {that a} proposal for a post-publication edit window of some minutes “ sounds reasonable.”

Musk is somebody who might seemingly use an edit button. His tweet about taking Tesla personal at $420 (roughly Rs. 31,700) per share, when funding was not secured, led to a $40 million (roughly Rs. 302 crore) SEC settlement and a requirement that Musk’s tweets be accredited by a company lawyer. Musk continues to be embroiled in a battle over that settlement.

Twitter had earlier appeared to be taking a tongue-in-cheek strategy to Musk’s ballot. Twitter’s CEO, Parag Agrawal, retweeted the ballot with a seeming reference to an earlier tweet by Musk, saying “The consequences of this poll will be important. Please vote carefully.” Musk had used the similar language in a March tweet describing one other of his polls that requested whether or not Twitter adheres to free speech rules.

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