I’m not sure what it is about the minor tweet details that Elon Musk believes will change the way that people perceive tweets, but he seems pretty focused on giving users more and more context about how their tweets are shared, or not, in the hopes that it will trigger more interest in tweeting more often.
Twitter’s latest update on this front is a new display of tweet bookmarks within the details display – i.e. the listing of tweet info you see when you tap through to expand a tweet.
As you can see in this example from reverse engineering expert Jane Manchun Wong, you’ll now have even more metrics added to the lower line of your tweet, so that you can see:
- Total retweets
- Total quote tweets
- Total likes
- Total bookmarks
There’s also the tweet view count, which Twitter rolled out in December, and was also initially tacked onto the end of that lower stat line, before Twitter updated the format in January, because it looked too clunky like this:
But now it’s added bookmarks to the display anyway - which seems pretty cluttered, and really, not particularly valuable as a stat. Though more data is always better. Maybe there’s some insight to be gleaned from each different element.
So why is Twitter adding a bookmarks counter at all?
Well, again, Twitter 2.0 chief Elon Musk seems convinced that by providing more context as to how people interact with tweets, that will make people more inclined to share more often.
Back in December, Elon tweeted that he felt the bookmarks function had been hidden behind an ‘obscure UI’, which had likely stopped many users from utilizing it. He then vowed to make bookmarks a bigger element, while also looking to add bookmarks into each tweet’s like count.
Yes, that will be added in an upcoming release. Also, if your tweet is bookmarked, it will be treated as a “quiet like” and increment your likes counter.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 20, 2023
It seemed that Elon was trying to boost bookmarks as an alternative to likes – because sometimes there might be content that you’re interested in reading, but you don’t necessarily want to ‘like’ as such.
But then again, counting bookmarks as ‘quiet likes’ means that you’re effectively amplifying that content either way, which somewhat negates the alternate functionality argument.
I’m not entirely sure what the motivation is, but now, you’ll have more context as to how people are interacting with your tweets, and maybe, in future, bookmarks will be utilized in a different way to dictate algorithmic reach.
Or something. I don’t know – all I know for sure is that bookmarks now have their own counter. In some cases, that may be an interesting data point.