Twitter Friday: Do the New Retweets Suck? How to Fix Them? |

Twitter Friday: Do the New Retweets Suck? How to Fix Them?

By Tad Chef / November 20, 2009

Retweet feature

A few months ago I wrote for the first time about the new internal retweet feature on Twitter. I didn’t like it. Now it turns out as the feature is being gradually rolled out that seemingly most people don’t like it. So this time I won’t annoy you with another “it sucks” post I will try to suggest solutions where the new retweet feature actually sucks.

In principle it’s a good thing to embrace retweets for Twitter.

Twitter just follows the will of its users in a way. On the other hand it’s counterproductive to change retweets in such a way that we barely recognize them as such anymore.

There are a few issues with the new retweet feature though, some of them are:

  • You see tweets by strangers
  • You hardly notice that a tweet is a retweet (no “RT:” or “via” just a recycling icon)
  • Third party tools don’t recognize new retweets yet (and don’t display them at all)
  • You can’t add your opinion to a retweet, you can onle repeat it as a whole
  • It adds a layer of complexity and it’s confusing

There are a few good points about the new retweets as well:

  • They require less space
  • You see how many people retweeted a particualr tweet. it says “retweeted by and x others” where x is the number of retweets

Some features can be both good or bad depending on their use on the perspective

  • You can block retweets by a person

The option to block retweets means that some people will become real followers while others will just read your direct tweets.

There is a simple solution for most of the issues: Let the Twitter users decide how they display retweets. Twitter should offer “advanced options” for retweet display. The options should be:

  • Choose retweet display: icon, RT, via etc.
  • Choose retweet avatar: The retweeting user, the retweeted user
  • Retweet editing: Edit as new or just forward unchanged
  • Switch off native retweet feature to add retweets manually

Also I want to see which followers block my retweets. Sometimes it can be as simple as letting people decide themselves. Of course we’re not as important as TechCrunch or Mashable to make Twitter listen but you can by suggesting it.

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