So first Twitter tried a TV ad, now they’re getting rid of the favorite star and replacing it with a heart. Product manager Akarshan Kumar posted on the Twitter blog that they hope the heart will make Twitter easier for new users to understand.
Why use a heart? “The heart … is a universal symbol that resonates across languages, cultures, and time zones. The heart is more expressive, enabling you to convey a range of emotions and easily connect with people. And in our tests, we found that people loved it.” Other more practical, reasons are that Periscope has already used the heart successfully, and the language of a like (instead of a favorite) gets Twitter more in line with other social media sites.
Twitter started testing alternatives to the favorite star in the summer, and the update just rolled out to Twitter, Vine and Periscope today. And don't expect the changes to stop. CEO Jack Dorsey has made it clear that he and his team will do whatever it takes to bring new users to Twitter.
Since Twitter is the oldest of the three, the change is ruffling the most feathers there. All the changes to Twitter probably do make it appealing to people who have never used Twitter before and are used to Facebook. But for the users who have been with Twitter for years, partly because it was different than Facebook, all the changes – new profiles, emphasis on photos, no character limit in direct messages – just seem to weaken the strong brew that was once Twitter.
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