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Why adding a feature to edit tweets after the fact might not be such a good thing


Every time a major news event happens, and reports start flying around the social media-sphere about the details of the shooting or earthquake or whatever it is, Twitter comes under fire for helping to spread inaccurate news, as it did during Hurricane Sandy and the Boston bombings. In some cases, those tweets are just mistakes sent in the heat of the moment, and the author is unable to take them back — but what if they could edit them after they were published?

According to a report from former Reuters social-media editor Matthew Keys, Twitter is considering a new feature that would allow users to edit a tweet after it had already been sent (Keys left Reuters after being charged with helping the group Anonymous hack a former employer, and has set up his own news site).

Given the number of times that I personally have tweeted something and instantly regretted it — either because I made a typing mistake, or included the wrong Twitter handle for someone, or a hundred other potential errors — such a feature would undoubtedly be popular with many users. But at the same time, I have to wonder: Would it really work? Is it actually necessary? And would it somehow change the nature of Twitter in important ways?

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Source: GigaOm.com


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