Twitter appears to be sending out a message to a group of very high-profile users suggesting that these users post photos directly to Twitter instead of sharing through Instagram.
Mashable secured a screenshot of the prompt, which shows the aesthetic differences between sharing an Instagram link and posting a photo directly through Twitter. In 2012, Instagram shut off Twitter Cards integration, meaning that the images would no longer appear in-line on the Twitter feed. Instead, Instagram photos shared out to Twitter would simply show as an Instagram.com link and push the user to the website for viewing.
At the time, many people were upset that Instagram would interfere with the user experience for Twitter. It’s also worth noting that parent company Facebook has always displayed and still proudly shows Instagram images right in the feed.
The original backlash over Instagram shutting down Twitter integration has long been forgotten, and in many ways, Instagram has won. In December, Instagram announced that it had surpassed 300 million active users, surging past Twitter’s 284 million active users.
Twitter, which is older than Instagram, has struggled to keep up with the young gun in the media department. Twitter has released countless updates to the web product and the mobile apps to try to bring more attention to images and videos. It added a tab under user profiles to view media only, and put more focus on images that are used on profiles, like the addition of the Facebook-style header image and the now-larger profile photos.
The company also added photo filters and editing tools long ago to deal with Instagram’s exodus from the feed in 2012.
This latest message from Twitter to its mega-users, asking them to post photos from the app itself, only shows the severity of that struggle as consumers hungrily consume more and more multimedia content.
We’ve reached out to Twitter and will update if we hear back.