Fail Whale

Apparently the good folks at Twitter don’t think we’re smart enough to make our own decision as to whether or not we want to see @replies from the people we follow that are directed towards people we don’t follow.

Twitter Blog: Small Settings Update

We’ve updated the Notices section of Settings to better reflect how folks are using Twitter regarding replies. Based on usage patterns and feedback, we’ve learned most people want to see when someone they follow replies to another person they follow—it’s a good way to stay in the loop. However, receiving one-sided fragments via replies sent to folks you don’t follow in your timeline is undesirable. Today’s update removes this undesirable and confusing option.

Confused? That’s understandable and exactly why we made the update.

The problem is that is how many of us find new people to follow, by seeing who our friends are replying to, then clicking through to follow the conversation.

During the process of writing this blog post, @biz updated their post to state the following:

Spotting new folks in tweets is an interesting way to check out new profiles and find new people to follow. Despite this update, you’ll still see mentions or references linking to people you don’t follow. For example, you’ll continue to see, “Ev meeting with @biz about work stuff” even if you don’t follow @biz. We’ll be introducing better ways to discover and follow interesting accounts as we release more features in this space.

So if it’s not a direct @reply (where @ is the first character of the tweet), then you’ll still see the mention … but taking away our choice is still lame. Bring back #openreplies. Turn off @replies by default if it causes too much of a server load, but give us the option to see all posts (even @replies) from the people we follow.