Twitter announced a new way to tweet called Fleet. Fleet is a temporary tweet that lasts 24 hours then disappears. The goal is to encourage more users to become less passive by joining conversations in a way that feels safe.
Fleets to Encourage More Tweets
According to Twitter they have received feedback from many users who feel intimidated by the public and permanent nature of tweeting on Twitter. Because of that, Twitter says many tweets are left in draft mode.
There is a phenomenon in online communities called lurking. In every community there are a great deal of users who do not participate. They are called lurkers.
I’ve been a moderator on forums and an owner of an online community since 2004 and the non-posting lurker behavior is a real thing.
As a community administrator I can see that the number of members who are passively reading consistently outnumber the number of social media members who are actively posting.
A common reason for the non-posting behavior has consistently been fear of being flamed. The word flamed means to be publicly ridiculed or chastised.
That’s why it’s not uncommon to see posts on social media that are prefaced with the words, “First time poster, please be gentle…”
Posting on social media, even behind a nickname, can be scary.
Twitter’s new feature acknowledges this phenomenon by stating that the purpose behind Fleets is to remove the danger out of a permanent and public tweet by making the tweet last for only twenty four hours.
“To help people feel more comfortable, we’ve been working on a lower pressure way for people to talk about what’s happening. Today, we’re launching Fleets so everyone can easily join the conversation in a new way – with their fleeting thoughts.
…Fleets are for sharing momentary thoughts – they help start conversations and only stick around for 24 hours.”
Fleet Was Tested Around the World
According to Twitter, the new feature has been tested in Brazil, Italy, India, and South Korea. The feedback confirmed that it helped users new to Twitter to ease into posting their thoughts and that the amount of tweets by longtime users tended to increase in number.
Twitter attributed the increase in amount of tweets to users feeling more comfortable with this format when sharing thoughts and opinions.
Multiple Sharing Options
Twitter announced that users can share a variety of media and reactions in a Fleet. But unlike regular tweets, Fleets come with additional styling options like a background and a variety of ways to style text.
According to Twitter:
“You can Fleet text, reactions to Tweets, photos or videos and customize your Fleets with various background and text options. Soon, stickers and live broadcasting will be available in Fleets. “
How Twitter Fleets Work:
Twitter posted a video with screenshots that demonstrate how easy it is to Fleet.
Step 1. Find a Tweet
Step 2. Tap Share a Tweet Icon
Step 3. Tap Share in a Fleet
Step 4. Tap the Fleet Button to Share
Twitter Fleets Availability
Fleets will be rolling out worldwide within the coming days. Fleet will be available on Android and iOS apps. There will be additional features added to the Fleets based on user feedback.