A guide for the changes—and response to—#newtwitter

How have Twitter users responded to the platform's new format? That depends on how you spell "ew."


Fernando Alfonso III

Internet Culture

Published Dec 9, 2011   Updated Jun 3, 2021, 12:18 am CDT

Twitter users still communicate in 140 characters or less, but everything has about the microblogging platform just received a major overhaul.

The new Web, Apple iOS, and Android interfaces have more rounded edges, less buttons and bigger, brighter, text. Here’s a breakdown of these interfaces have changed and the response the changes have received from users thus far.

The entire interface has been flipped so that your timeline shows up on the right side of the window, while the Twitter trends menu, who to follow, and profile information has been shifted to the left. The menu bar across the top of the page and on top of your timeline has been cut down to one.

Now a long black menu bar at the top of the window features thee different options: Home, Connect, and Discover. Connect allows users to monitor mentions, retweets, and who has followed your account. Discover allows users to search through hashtags and find new accounts to follow. Tweets can also now be easily embedded into different sites by copying and pasting a line of code.

Moreover, companies like Disney, Coca-Cola, and Nike can customize their profile pages “with large header images that advertisers can use to display their logo and tagline more prominently than under the standard format, where branded elements of the page design are often partially covered by the time line of tweets,” reported AdAge.

Apple iOS/Android
If there’s one word to describe the new interfaces it’s “minimal.” Like the Web interface, mobile phone users now have four different buttons to chose from: Home, Connect, Discover, and Me. The Me button allows people to see their profile, direct messages, lists, and saved drafts. The entire interface now rests on a light gray background that gives the app some depth. The timeline is bigger, brighter, and more prominently features Twitter profile pics.

News of the redesigns spread on Twitter faster than an obituary notice, as the company encouraged users to to share feedback using the hashtag #newlook. That request fell on deaf ears and has only collected about 1,500 mentions in the last 24 hours. Tweeters instead used #newtwitter to share their thoughts on the new redesigns. The hashtag has been mentioned more than 35,000 times, according to statistics from Topsy, a social media search engine.

“hello #newtwitter – im kinda confused. i know we will like eachother but give me time,” tweeted Justin Bieber.

“I’m ok with this #newtwitter Different, but cool,” tweeted mix martial arts fighter Tim Kennedy.

With the help of Topsy, here’s a breakdown of how often #newtwitter was used with the following descriptors:

  • #newtwitter and love: 1,100
  • #newtwitter and hate: 550
  • #newtwitter and confused: 310
  • #newtwitter and wtf: 310
  • #newtwitter and awesome: 300
  • #newtwitter and sucks: 220
  • #newtwitter and different: 220
  • #newtwitter and finally: 180
  • #newtwitter and not bad: 45
  • #newtwitter and lost: 45
  • #newtwitter and pissed: 25
  • #newtwitter and ew: 43
  • #newtwitter and eww: 6
  • #newtwitter and ewww: 12
  • #newtwitter and ewwww: 7
  • #newtwitter and ewwwww: 1

Photo by rikulu

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*First Published: Dec 9, 2011, 2:20 pm CST