Twitter is becoming Facebook. There, I said it. As much as I love Twitter, the recent change to have a like-type button rather than favorite is not going to go without some ridicule.
Now, in their defense and my long usage of the platform, I’ve always looked at favoriting a tweet as liking it. However, the dynamic of a favorite held much more collateral to Twitter than you may think. The formerly favorite button served as a filing cabinet — if you wanted to go back to something you saw and wanted to address it later, you could. In addition, the favorite button indicated that you agreed with a point of view that was made. Having a heart holds a different connotation.
Did Twitter need to make this change? It’s a no and a yes. No. The star icon (or favorite button) has been what set it apart from the other platforms. It offered Twitter a uniqueness — an edge. Yes because for a while now, Twitter hasn’t seen drastic growth in users. It needed to do something that would encourage more people to join and make using the platform more appealing.
In a post to explain the reasoning for the change, Twitter’s product manager, Ashmar Kumar, says that the star icon was confusing to newcomers of the platform; however, the heart “is a universal symbol that resonates across languages, cultures, and time zones.” He also said that “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.”
While the function of the new heart button has not changed, again– Twitter has ruined any chance of not being accidentally mistaken for Facebook.
How do you feel about the change? Do you favorite it, or love it (see what I did there). Tweet me your reactions, or comment below!