Never lose a gem of a tweet to the ravages of the algorithmic timeline again.
Although its team is busy trying to solve major site-wide problems, such as the harassment epidemic and verification controversies, Twitter is also listening to users when it comes to seemingly benign UX changes.
A popular Twitter user request
Twitter’s vice-president of product, Keith Coleman, confirmed in October that the company is finally going to allow users to bookmark tweets to read later, something he said was a popular request from users.
✨??Fresh out of HackWeek and coming soon — a new way to save tweets to read later. Been a top request (❤️??!) The team would love your feedback as they dial in the design! #SaveForLater ? https://t.co/6oo2lhqFbW
— Keith Coleman ??? (@kcoleman) October 10, 2017
Just over a month later, staff product designer Tina Koyama gave details on the testing process the feature is currently undergoing. She said the team spent a lot of time figuring out how the feature would work in practice. “We went through all the designed flows and picked the ones that are the easiest to navigate to test out with our community.”
News from the #SaveForLater team! We’ve decided to call our feature Bookmarks because that's a commonly used term for saving content and it fits nicely alongside the names of the other features in the navigation. pic.twitter.com/cQ0X1PHlsR
— Tina ???? (@tinastsh) November 22, 2017
Privacy is crucial
A emphasis on privacy was a crucial aspect of user feedback, according to Koyama. “You told us that you want tweets you’ve bookmarked to be private, so only you can see it. We kept this in mind while creating designs for the feature.”
In October, Twitter product manager Jesar Shah tweeted a short GIF demo of how the feature would work, with the option to add a tweet to Bookmarks appearing when users tap the corner button, and the Bookmarks folder appearing under Profiles, above a user’s Lists.
For Hack Week @Twitter we started developing #SaveForLater. Here’s the early prototype that we put together in a week, which is likely to change. pic.twitter.com/c5LekvVF3l
— jesar ? (@jesarshah) October 9, 2017
According to Shah, many of the requests for a ‘save for later’ feature came from Japanese users.
Up until this point, users would have to like a tweet or DM it to themselves to ensure they had it saved in some shape or form, but many people wanted an option to save a tweet without having the implied public endorsement of ‘liking’ it.
It could also come in handy for things like saving tweets with links to articles or videos a user wants to read, meaning it may become something of a rival to apps such as Pocket, which allow you to save articles to read at a time that suits you.
Twitter app on iPhone. Image: Worawee Meepian/Shutterstock