mnmlist: what twitter needs to add next


Twitter started with a brilliant idea of simplicity:

  • Keep tweets to 140 characters or less, forcing people to be brief and to the point (unlike emails or blog posts).
  • Have one stream to read, as opposed to multiple things to check on.
  • Make it simple and easy to tweet or reply, from anywhere.

And people loved the simplicity, and 3rd-party developers used it well to make great apps. Twitter’s simplicity is one reason it’s a better user experience than Facebook or MySpace.

Now Twitter has added lists and the new Retweet feature, and it seems they might be looking to add more. Others are calling for them to remove the 140-character limit, allow more customizations to profile pages, and add a whole host of other features.

No. Please, Twitter, don’t give in to the feature requests, the tendency towards feature bloat. I will live with the lists and retweets, but please stop adding new features.

Instead, focus on making what you have better. Improve your infrastructure so you don’t have the Fail whale ever appear. Make your search better. Get rid of spam. Make it easier to unfollow people. Make the site even simpler.

Even better, move towards an open protocol — allow interconnectivity with and other services so we aren’t trapped into one service. People don’t like being trapped.

Keep it simple, Twitter.