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What is Twitter? - a complete guide 2024

Through its long history, many people have asked ‘what is Twitter?’ one of the few unique social media platforms out there, so we’re here to answer that.

What is Twitter: The white X logo pasted on top of the blue Twitter bird, pasted on an ice blue PT background

What is Twitter?” That’s a cry I’ve heard many times before. I said it myself, even, when I was just a Facebook foundling. Now, sadly, I have become corrupted by the short-form, snack-sized, itty-bitty bits of information Twitter offers me, and, I’m ashamed to say, dear reader, I’ve become an expert.

So, who better to answer the question than myself? Well, maybe Elon Musk, or that Jack guy, or, well, countless others. But they don’t work for Pocket Tactics, buddy, and I do. If you’ve had enough already, check out our what is Instagram, what is TikTok, what is Zoom, what is LinkedIn, and what is Apple One guides.

Right, let’s get into the nitty-gritty of ‘what is Twitter?

What is Twitter?

Twitter, recently renamed X (though we’re going to keep calling it Twitter), is a social media platform where users share 280-character thoughts, jokes, news, and pretty much anything else you can put into words. You can add pictures, videos, polls, and many other things to a post.

Anyway, Twitter is a good spot to go to find news, especially in specific industries. Many people use it as a tool for work, unlike other social media platforms which are more focused on communicating with friends and family. This isn’t the sole use for Twitter, however, as there are many ways you can make use of it. The best way to find out is to dive in and give it a go.

To create a tweet, head to Twitter and press the plus sign on the mobile app, or type in the box at the top of the homepage on your desktop. What are you going to say? Well, as Twitter itself prompts, just consider ‘what’s happening’, whatever that means.

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What is the explore tab on Twitter?

The explore tab on Twitter is where you can find trending information. Stuff can trend because of breaking news, a new video game trailer, or anything else many people are talking about it. The more the keyword is used across the platform, the higher it trends.

To find the explore tab, head to Twitter and either press explore on the left-hand side in the web browser, or the magnifying glass symbol at the bottom of the screen in the mobile app. From there, you can see various things trending either globally or within your country, industry, or demographic.

What is Twitter’s character limit?

The original character limit for Twitter was increased to 280 in 2017, whereas before it was 140. I’m no mathematician, but I’m pretty sure that’s a 100% increase, let me just check my calculator… Yep, that’s double!

What is Twitter Blue?

Twitter Blue is a new paid tier of the social media platform which is now named X Premium to match the new name of the site. It offers subscribers a blue checkmark, the illustrious sign once reserved for public figures, journalists, and other reputable outlets.

There are several tiers of X Premium, each with additional benefits. These benefits include reduced ads, the aforementioned check mark, creator subscriptions, ad revenue sharing, and more. Check out the X Premium help page for the full details.

How much is X Premium?

X Premium is split into three tiers, confusingly named Basic, Premium, and Premium Plus. Here’s the pricing breakdown:

  • Basic: Starts at $3/month or $32/year on web
  • Premium: Starts at $8/month or $84/year on web
  • Premium+: Starts at $16/month or $168/year on web

Do what you want with your money and everything, but if you want my two cents, a paid subscriber tier that doesn’t remove all adverts and offers access to exclusive yet undefined features sounds like a bit of a scam to me!

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What is a hashtag?

A hashtag is when you put the octothorpe symbol (#) before a word. This highlights it on Twitter, allowing you and others to tap on the highlighted word to see other posts that have used the same hashtag.

What are Twitter Circles?

Twitter Circles were closed groups of people you can tweet to specifically. This means you can create a circle of people who follow you and only tweet to that select group.

The X team decided to deprecate Circles in October 2023, meaning you can’t post to your Circle anymore or add new people. You can still remove people though, which just feels a bit rude.

Who owns Twitter?

Elon Musk owns Twitter, after buying the social media platform for $44 billion. In December 2022, he said he would step down as CEO after finding a replacement. Ex-CEO Jack Dorsey, Noah Glass, Biz Stone, and Evan Williams founded the company.

Okay then, you’re now more than well enough equipped for the next time someone asks you ‘what is Twitter?’ If you want more diligently formulated answers to sentences starting with interrogatives, check out our what is Genshin Impact, what is Netflix, and what is Microsoft Teams guides.