Since 2015, Twitter has allowed users on its web platform and its various apps – mobile and desktop – to add comments to their tweets. Quoted tweets, we call them. The feature had existed for years on third-party Twitter apps and on Twitter’s mobile app with each coming up with their own implementation. Do you remember those days when you’d see RT@… or “@…” ?
Since, for whatever reason, some of us may prefer to quote a tweet as a response instead of directly replying below the tweet, it can be hard to keep track of conversations. A single viral tweet can elicit responses of all sorts but you won’t find all of them in the replies of the said tweet.
A well-known hack has been to just copy the link of the tweet and paste it in the Twitter search bar. Usually, that brings up all the quoted replies.
But, why would you do all of that when bots exist to serve us? @QuotedReplies, the most well-known of such bots, boasting a reported over 40 million impressions monthly, has established itself as the go-to handle for getting all the quoted responses to a particular tweet. See an interesting conversation that you want to follow? Just tag @QuotedReplies and the bot will reply in no time with a link, basically of the same search results you’d get if you did it yourself as described above (there are apps and browser extensions but who needs those?).
In a bid to make the discovery of quoted tweets easier, Twitter is testing a simple solution.
A new “Retweets with comments” option is showing up on the accounts of a select few users that Twitter has chosen as it conducts tests.
Should the feature eventually roll out, that will mean the end for solutions like QuotedReplies.
That Twitter was interested in adding such a feature on its own has been evident since late last year when Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, in his tour of Africa, was introduced to the developer behind the QuotedReplies bot, Nigeria’s Dara Oladosu. Oladosu was offered a job on the spot.
With a count of the number of “retweets with comments”, the new feature, should it get the green light to move from the test bed to production, will offer users a handy at-a-glance look at how a tweet is faring. We are here for the enhanced user experience and can’t complain. Now, can they stop the timeline from auto-scrolling? Please?