Twitter head Jack Dorsey sent out a tweet this afternoon hinting the social platform might get a couple of interesting updates to tell us who else is currently online and to help us more easily follow Twitter conversation threads.
“Playing with some new Twitter features: presence (who else is on Twitter right now?) and threading (easier to read convos),” Dorsey tweeted, along with samples.
The “presence” feature would make it easier to engage with those you follow who are online at the moment and the “threading” feature would allow Twitter users to follow a conversation easier than the current embed and click-through method.
However, several responders seemed concerned about followers seeing them online.
Twitter’s head of product Sara Haider responded to one such tweeted concern at the announcement saying she “would definitely want you to have full control over sharing your presence.”
So it seems there would be some sort of way to hide that you are online if you don’t want people to know you are there.
There were also a few design concerns involved in threading conversations together. TC OG reporter turned VC M.G. Siegler wasn’t a fan of the UI’s flat tops. Another user wanted to see something more like iMessage.
I personally like the nesting idea as it cleans the conversation up and makes it easier to follow along. However, I really don’t care as much how it’s designed beyond that (flat tops, round tops) as long as I don’t have to click through a bunch of tweets like I do with the @reply, which is annoying and makes it hard to follow the thread.
I also don’t think I’d want others knowing if I’m online and it’s not a feature I need for those I tweet at, either. Conversations often happen at a ripping pace on the platform. You are either there for it or you can read about it later. I get the thinking on letting users know who’s live but it’s not necessary and seems to be something a lot of people don’t want.
Its unclear when either of these features would roll out to the general public, though it seems they’re available to those in a select test group. We’ve asked Twitter and are waiting to hear back for more information. Of course, plenty of users are still wondering when we’re getting that edit button.