Twitter has been trying for a long time to attract users. Compared to its rival Facebook, Twitter only has 302 active users every month, which means one-fifth of the monthly active users which use Facebook. However Twitter claims that its audience has in fact one billion viewers, but people do not log into the service; they watch tweets without being logged in. With its Project Lightning Twitter hopes to master live events and attract more users.
The new feature will organize the content in accordance with live events. Having separate channels for events which occur in real time Twitter will use both algorithms and human editors in order to organize updates, photos and videos for the audience irrespective of the fact that the users have an account or not.
The content will be focused on specific events both from web and from other apps such as Vine and Periscope. In addition, the content is pre-cached so that when users click on it, it will load almost instantly. This means you will have to wait a shorter time before reaching the content.
These streams will not be presented in a timeline interface, but rather in a new full-screen format. Each tweet, photo or video will appear in chronological order and one at a time. This format will make it easier for users to swipe through and observe how an event evolves in real-time. Twitter’s head of product, Kevin Weil, described Project Lightning as a new manner of looking at tweets and a bold change.
For those who access Twitter but are not members of the website this feature will function as a gateway. Non-member users will have a complete experience and will be encouraged to respond to what they see and even contribute with their own content.
This move also intends to fight the idea according to which Twitter is a place where celebrities, journalists and politicians gather. Project Lightning will concentrate on both occurrences which come without warning and scheduled events such as the NBA Finals. The feature will provide exclusive information about major league sport games, the Grammys or Oscars from some of the company’s close partners.
It is not yet known when Project Lightning will be put into practice, but it seems that there will pass a couple of months before the feature will be rolled out.
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