After a little over a month of beta testing the 280 character limit with a handful of users, Twitter has decided to roll out the new character limit to all users, which unfortunately includes the most post-happy, infamous tweeter in the country: President Donald Trump.
While the character limit increase may be beneficial to everyday users who truly care about grammar and spelling, it can prove disastrous considering Trump uses Twitter as a platform to insult his constituents and address important topics like foreign policy.
Perhaps the greatest legacy Trump will leave as president will be the late night and early morning tweetstorms in which he seems to document all of his thoughts regarding sensitive topics like national security or ongoing FBI investigations.
Instead of making presidential speeches or just being presidential, Trump’s reaction is to tweet first, speak later.
Trump notoriously uses Twitter for everything: bashing his critics, insulting other politicians, constantly accusing the media of fake news and taunting North Korea.
While some tweets lead to great internet memes like “covfefe,” they’re often littered with grammar and spelling mistakes.
Now those tweets can be longer, include more sensitive information and potentially serve as a playground for foreign affairs when he fires off messages saying things like, “Why would Kim Jong-un insult me by calling me ‘old’ when I would NEVER call him ‘short and fat?’ Oh well, I try so hard to be his friend – and maybe someday that will happen!”
Twitter should not be the place for official statements of international policy, but Trump’s tweets appear to be just that.
Politicians using Twitter is nothing new, and Trump has been firing off wild tweets long before he was even elected, but the new character limit allows him more space to flash his limited vocabulary and essentially, more opportunity to make a statement or gaffe.
Do Twitter users really need a whole paragraph’s worth of tweets from Trump to start their mornings? Not really.
On Nov. 3, for 11 glorious minutes, Trump’s Twitter account was shut down by a Twitter contractor on their last day. For hours, the cause of his disabled account was unknown and puzzled top executives.
The few minutes that his account was down was a look into how Twitter users provided a mostly excited response if Trump left his social media out of his political business completely. 280 characters extends his voice far past what 140 characters used to do and even then it was too long.
Although the expansion of the character limit has opened the door for longer messages, Twitter needs to remain as it is – a fun platform for sharing short messages.
Twitter does not need to be a place for paragraph-long statements that clog up the timelines of users who are just looking for a joke or a quick news update. It definitely doesn’t need to be a service for watching how the next world war starts.
It’s unfortunate the platform has been hijacked by Trump, but the expanded character limit will only give the world more rambling tweets and put everyone in danger while eliminating the fun and convenience of the website.