New Twitter front page brings search – and world news – to the fore

29 Jul 2009

Social networking site Twitter has unveiled a brash new front page look that puts search to the very core of what the micro-blogging service is all about, breaking the world’s news!

As reported yesterday on, Twitter has been working on a new front page design to better define itself with a mission statement: “Share and discover what’s happening right now anywhere in the world.”

This simple and straightforward statement shows Twitter is keen to build on the unexpected kudos it earned as a disseminator of breaking news as it became one of the few means alongside YouTube through which information was able to reach the rest of the world during the recent political battles in Iran.

YouTube was so inspired by the momentum citizen reporting created that it established a YouTube Citizen Reporter’s Channel to meet the growing appetite for citizen news.

Twitter describes the newly designed front page as being more helpful to people new to, but the power of the medium to disseminate knowledge and inform a lot of people at once appears to be the real factor. This of course lends hugely to Twitter’s potential to attract advertising and sponsorship deals once it finally reveals a business plan.

“Today we’re trying a redesigned front page for folks who are new to,” wrote co-founder Biz Stone in the company’s blog.

“If you’re a regular around these parts, then you won’t notice the new look unless you sign out of your account. Helping people access Twitter in more relevant and useful ways upon first introduction lowers the barrier to accessing the value Twitter has to offer and presents the service more consistently with how it has evolved.

“Twitter began as a rudimentary social tool based on the concept of status messages but together with those who use it every day, the service has taught us what it wants to be. From features invented by users to applications built on the platform, we’re still discovering potential. Twitter has moved from simple social networking into a new kind of communication and a valuable source of timely information. Also, it’s fun.

“The open and timely exchange of information will have a positive impact on the world and Twitter has a role to play. We have a lot of work to do when it comes to the quality of our search results and trend analysis but repositioning the product to focus more on discovery is an important first step in presenting Twitter to a wider audience of folks around the world who are eager to start engaging with new people, ideas, opinions, events, and sources of information,” Stone said.

By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years