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Twitter is working on a new feature straight out of AIM

Twitter isn’t just working on an edit button. It’s also apparently working on a new feature that has a decidedly retro vibe. And we’re not sure if we like it or not.

On Thursday night, Jane Manchun Wong tweeted a screenshot of an in-progress status feature. In her tweet, Wong described the feature as being part of Tweet Composer, revealed that it was code-named “Vibe,” and said that it could be considered “something similar to the Instagram Threads app’s Status.”

Twitter is working on “Set a status” in Tweet Composer, codenamed “Vibe”

You can think of it as something similar to Instagram Threads app’s Status

— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) April 22, 2022

But a number of Twitter users who responded to Wong’s tweet compared the feature to older versions of it from Facebook and AIM. And on that score, we’d have to agree. Because while it may end up functioning more similarly to Instagram Threads’ Status, it still looks dated — like it belongs to the early days of Facebook or in an AIM away message. Its appearance is retro, but not necessarily in a good way.

And how useful this status feature ends up being for Twitter users still remains to be seen. Do your followers really need to know if you’re “lurking Twitter” or grocery shopping, or “eating yummy ramen”? Probably not. Wong also brought up another interesting point in another tweet on the subject, saying she felt the feature could become “a new spam vector if Twitter allows custom Status.” Which isn’t great. No one needs to see more spam tweets.

So far, the feature (in its current form) doesn’t really seem to fit in with how Twitter users actually use the app. Perhaps instead of being used to update your followers on what you’re doing, it could instead indicate other things like mood or tone. Focusing on using the Status feature to clarify the mood or tone of a tweet (or that of the person who wrote it) might be more beneficial as it enhances communication on a platform that needs better communication among its users.

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Anita George
Anita has been a technology reporter since 2013 and currently writes for the Computing section at Digital Trends. She began…
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