Today the world woke up to a big change on Twitter: to “favorite” a tweet, there was a heart where a star used to be.

Twitter rolls out the new heart icon to "like" tweets. | Rachel, Really Social Blog
Starting today, Twitter users can

The change comes shortly after Facebook announced the addition of alternate reactions to the normalized “Like” (incidentally what the new Twitter heart signifies, leaving “favorite” in our Internet past).

What does it all mean?

Probably nothing. Maybe. Here are a couple of theories to take or leave:

The Internet is full of meanies.

If you spend any time online, you see how bold or brazen fellow human beings can be while securely seated behind a keyboard. Spewing hate or words of derision is far easier when the face-to-face is out of the equation.

In many ways, the rise of live video streaming feels like an answer to this lack of humanity. When we can see a face to put with the handle, we make a better connection and hopefully better efforts to treat each other like humans. Perhaps this move by Twitter lines up with trends to see a softer side of social media.

Twitter sees you, Instagram.

Instagram is better than - everything? | Rachel, Really Social Blog
Instagram is swiftly overtaking other social platforms.

Social media’s leading minds realize that Instagram has taken off as a preferred platform among millennials and other influential demographics. Go ahead and open your Instagram app now (or just work from short-term memory), and you’ll see the clear heart icon as the way to acknowledge a user’s post.

Instead of giving a gold star, why not a familiar heart? Since you can dual-post your latest Instagram to Twitter, might as well line up the lingo.

Why hearts?

Adding a <3 to a tweet/post/story might not be everyone’s cup of tea. Where is the option to simply offer a non-committal acknowledgement of a shared snippet?

Perhaps Twitter just took another step to allowing even more emotion to be expressed beyond the frantically-typed-or-tapped word. After all, now we can post animated GIFs in our favorite platforms. Perhaps offering a hair-pat type of interaction through a bursting, sparkly heart is just the ticket. (You caught that it actually bursts, right?)

 

Do you heart the new Twitter feature? Rant or rave below.

Published by Rachel

In the words spoken by Samuel Jackson in Ironman 2, “I’m the most real person you’ll ever know.” Although I have a flair for the dramatic, I’ve never been one to live behind a facade. From the moment you meet me, I can promise you an experience grounded in transparency and lively with humor. My 40+ years of life have taught me the ability to laugh and to help others enjoy the moment with me. I use my eye for detail and focus on the big picture to bring success to anything I try, and that includes the work I do for my clients.

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