Fleets: Do We Really Need The “Stories” Feature On Twitter?
Of all the most anticipated features Jack could think of introducing to our timeline…he is bringing…wait for it: none. But he is still bringing something, one that Twiterattis did not ask for – Fleets.
Fleets! While that name is obviously mined from the word ‘fleeting’, which suggests that this new Twitter feature is not permanent on timelines, it does sound like Jack is about to start a taxi company populated by Facebook and Instagram rejects.
Apparently Twitter has been developing a new Stories feature called Fleets, reportedly for more than a year, and it’s ready to finally start testing it.
Fleets represents a way for Twitter to better rival the likes of Instagram, Snapchat, and other platforms that have incorporated disappearing video formats into their platforms.
It’s clear that this feature encourages new forms of sharing, perhaps even more casual. But Twitterattis do not behave exactly like Intagrammers and the good people on Facebook. With more emphasis on texts than on photos and videos, Twitter users would prefer a feature like an edit button that can allow them to correct their typos.
But the big bosses at Twitter thought not.
Kayvon Beykpour, the product lead at Twitter announced the news on the platform, writing:
We’re hoping that Fleets can help people share the fleeting thoughts that they would have been unlikely to Tweet. This is a substantial change to Twitter, so we’re excited to learn by testing it (starting with the rollout today in Brazil) and seeing how our customers use it.
I know what you're thinking: “THIS SOUNDS A LOT LIKE STORIES!”. Yes, there are many similarities with the Stories format that will feel familiar to people. There are also a few intentional differences to make the experience more focused on sharing and seeing people’s thoughts. pic.twitter.com/OaGYZpChcN
— Kayvon Beykpour (@kayvz) March 4, 2020
How do Fleets work?
Since this is still in its testing phase, you should see a plus button in a new row that sits above your Twitter timeline. You may see new ephemeral posts from others in this row. Tap the plus button to start a fleet.
You can type up to 280 characters of text, add photos, GIFs, or videos. When you post your fleet, it will appear in that new row alongside other Fleets from those you follow, with the most recent visible first.
Although you cannot like or retweet a fleet, you can respond to Fleets with reaction emoji – just like you can respond to tweets in direct messages. You can also respond with text, but that will open up a direct message thread with the person you’re messaging.
Brazil gets to be the first to test this new feature; Presumably, it will roll out more widely in the coming months.
Are Twitter Users Excited?
Well, new features to one’s favorite social media platform should spark some level of excitement, especially in a place like Twitter. But, the reverse seems to be the case as many feel there are other tweaks that would be of “more value”, hence the trending hashtag – RIP Twitter. Some of the anticipated features include – an Edit Button, being able to delete wrong messages in the DM, quoting messages when replying DM among others.
Here are some reactions to Fleets:
#RIPTwitter is trending because Twitter is adding the 24hr story function like IG and FB :/
we just wanted the edit tweet button and a way to organize bookmarks we didnt ask for this-
— 두유 SOY ⁷ ☾ ☻🌿 (@soyjinnie) March 5, 2020
— Pulp Librarian (@PulpLibrarian) March 5, 2020
— Social Media UK (@SMDigitalAgency) March 5, 2020
In a world where WhatsApp, Facebook & Instagram are hoping to be like Twitter, one would have hoped that Twitter will be secure in its authenticity but what’s this rumour about Twitter planning to rollout Stories? Who cares on Twitter? #RIPTwitter
— SEGA L'éveilleur®🚨 (@segalink) March 5, 2020