When it comes to social media, one platform has dominated the web, creating pop culture norms and real life experiences about following and epic fails. Since the demise of Facebook because of the frequent updates and spam, MySpace emails flooding your inbox from advertisers and beloved spam bots from AOL Chat rooms, social media has always found a way to turn people off.
Recently, Twitter launched a new version of the platform redesigning the website and its client software. According to their blog, the site is designed to make it easier than ever to follow and offer the same experience no matter which device you use. Genius right?
Most important is that TweetDeck has been actually configured to operate. One of the best Twitter applications for the computer was TweetDeck, well until Twitter purchased the company. TweetDeck made it much easier to tweet and manage Twitter from one screen.
For months the application didn’t support the frequent changes of Twitter, but now seems like they are allowing TweetDeck to be more user friendly (with Twitter restrictions). I would suggest downloading the new version to try it out because some features aren’t present. I have switched back to the old version for now. Curse you company buyouts!
Although my bitter breakup with TweetDeck, the new design is definitely more chic and modern. The features are easy to find and helps users keep information organized. I’m actually into technology, so I can appreciate a good redesign every once and a while.
However, I hope Twitter doesn’t fall into the awful trap like Facebook. One of the reasons people started to leave Facebook- or frequent it less- was the sordid updates. Every other month, Facebook would update or change the layout. This became very confusing and frustrating for users. Now Twitter seems to be following suite. There are always updates for applications on the phone and even site redesigns. This year alone, Twitter has gone through various face-lifts or changes. Fresh and new designs do not always equal quality. The terms connects versus mentions is also a new feature. It is important for Twitter to understand that introducing new language can be confusing. For example, “Mentions” is now called “@Connect”, and it now shows users interactions and mentions. Interactions show your retweets, mentions and new followers while mentions only shows your mentions. There is also a new tab called “#Discover” that shows users prominent headlines, people you may want to follow and trending topics.
If users thought the new terminology was confusing, another issue with the update is the emphasis of profile names. Now users are able to see the profile names first and the Twitter handle afterwards. For me, it is so much easier to recognize a Twitter handle versus someone’s crafted name. With people changing their avatars and profile names, managing followers has become harder.
For users to invest time and dedication to these constant updates, Twitter must be sure to explain the reasons as to why they are making said changes. Making everything seamless for users is important, but only if the new platform makes using Twitter easier. Hopefully the new update is easier to attract more users to the constantly growing site.
Honestly, Twitter is still leading the pack. However, because social media changes so much, Twitter can count these updates as relatively pointless, causing more users to constantly search for the next best platform- whenever that might come.