Reverse-coder Jane Manchun Wong has done it again – this time unearthing a new option for sent Tweets currently being tested by Twitter. The update would prompt users with an “undo” button, appearing for five seconds after a Tweet is posted. The change could be beneficial for, say, catching spelling errors before a Tweet goes public – or maybe simply giving users an extra moment to ponder their message before sharing with the world.
Twitter is working on “Undo Send” timer for tweets pic.twitter.com/nS0kuijPK0
— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) March 5, 2021
The final version will likely be formatted differently than this preview, as Twitter users have noted.
Will Twitter ever get a real editing option?
The move has been called a “compromise” effort in response to the longstanding requests for an editing option on Twitter. In an era when the unearthing of decades-old Tweets can be a career-destroying ritual, the desire for such an option is understandable. But this 5-second time window is hardly going to solve that problem.
Speaking about a full-scale editing option, Jack Dorsey has previously stated:
“The reason we don’t have edit in the first place is we were built on SMS, we were built on text messaging. Once you send a text, you can’t take it back. So when you send a tweet it goes to the world instantaneously. You can’t take it back. You could build it as such so maybe we introduce a 5-second to 30-second delay in the sending. And within that window, you can edit. The issue with going longer than that is it takes that real-time nature of the conversational flow out of it.”
Sorry, pro-edit advocates, but it looks like this 5-second window is about as good as it’s going to get.