Twitter announced a much-anticipated feature last week: the ability to edit tweets. The company said that once the feature is available, users will be able to edit their tweets for up to 30 minutes after posting. There’s a catch, though: users can only edit their tweets five times within this time frame.
While this limit may seem sufficient for correcting typos, uploading media files, or adding some tags, the company may have introduced it to prevent people from abusing the feature by changing the content of the tweet on a whim. The social media company told londonbusinessblog.com that it is currently observing user behavior and that the number of edits available to users may change in the approved time frame.
The ‘edit tweet’ feature is initially available to users who pay for the optional Twitter Blue subscription, but will not be rolled out to all paying users initially. Twitter has confirmed that New Zealand subscribers will get the feature first and will later be pushed to Twitter Blue users in Australia, Canada and the US as it learns more about usage patterns. So subscribers in these three countries may have to wait a little longer and use the service without the marquee feature.
After the company laid out its plans for the edit button, experts believed the tool could be used to spread political misinformation or crypto scams. But those cases will only emerge once a larger group of people start using the feature regularly. It’s too early to decide whether the feature will become a threat or just an option for people to fix their stupid typos.
In recent months, the social network has had a lot of scrutiny over the way it has handled its security practices, methods of tracking spam accounts and detecting child sexual abuse material (CSAM). The last thing the social media company would want is for one of its most anticipated features to wreak havoc.