Max Fleishman

Twitter says 98% of users have stuck with the new algorithmic timeline

Twitter's growth has slumped, but new changes are likely coming to turn it around.

Feb 29, 2020, 8:05 am*



Selena Larson

When Twitter announced our timelines would soon be partially dictated by an algorithm, some people tweeted their condolences about the platform’s death. As it turns out, Twitter users are actually cool with timelines that aren’t always in real-time. Unfortunately, the changes since last quarter have done little to improve Twitter’s growth. 

During the company’s first quarter earnings call, CEO Jack Dorsey said less than two percent of people have the new timeline opted-out of it, and that those with the new timeline are tweeting, retweeting, replying, and liking things more. 

Despite that positive news, growth has slowed, and the number of monthly active users increased just three percent from a year ago, signaling Twitter is still struggling to add new users. On the earnings call, CEO Jack Dorsey briefly kicked things off by underscoring the company’s priorities—which Dorsey announced in February—and proceeded to accept questions from shareholders and through Twitter and Periscope. 

The call’s focus remained on live content, from video via Periscope to real-time events like political debates. Twitter also put an emphasis on the deal recently struck with the NFL to stream 10 Thursday night football games in the upcoming season. Additionally, Dorsey discussed an emphasis on adding more talent and diversity to the board and company. 

It’s likely more significant changes are on the horizon for Twitter, and an increased focus on safety and harassment on the platform. Earlier this week the company added a new reporting tool with the ability to report multiple tweets to the company, and in a letter to shareholders, Twitter reiterated its commitment to improving safety tools and expanding the Safety Council the company debuted earlier this year. 

Twitter’s stock is down almost 14 percent in after hours trading after the company missed revenue expectations.

Users should expect more changes to come as Twitter continues to appeal to new users—despite what armchair quarterbacks predict will happen whenever Twitter messes with its core functionality, Tuesday’s earnings call shows that maybe people like change after all.

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*First Published: Apr 26, 2016, 3:12 pm