Twitter, with the aim of making its platform more accessible and beneficial to new members, has released a new feature — “Happening Now”. In this latest section, tweets on the same issues are grouped together. Although the latest feature will only cover tweets that are related to sports for now, it will be expanded to include other issues on trending news and entertainment.
Comparison with the “Moment” Feature
The “Happening Now” section, which is compatible with Android and iOS apps, can be found at the upper part of your timeline. It has been compared with another feature of Twitter known as Moments. The reason behind this comparison lies in the fact that both are quite identical because they aggregate tweets on a particular issue under one group. They do this grouping of tweets by making use of an algorithm to provide you with a dedicated tweet timeline on the particular issue presently taking place. But a number of differences are present in them. One major difference between the two sections is that the “Happening Now” feature does not make a curated grouping of tweets, narrating a broader story; while Moments is a group of tweets that are aggregated, broadly narrating a tale from the beginning to the end. Simply put, Happening Now is a feed of other posts that are all on the same issue.
Demo of the Latest Feature
Twitter launched this section with a demo showing sporting programs — which are NBA, MLB and NFL games specifically — at the upper part of your timeline. A card or label is used to indicate the specific game that is currently being played as well as a corresponding picture. To view the content of this card, you can swipe through it and tap on any selection you need updates on. This will then take you to a tweet timeline on the event, but you will always find the present live score at the upper section. This Twitter’s latest release appears to be a supplementary feature for the section on Twitter for streaming sports programs live.
Collection of tweets for the new section does not depend on hashtags. From the demo of Happening Now released by Twitter yesterday, some tweets could be seen with relevant hashtags, while others were just making a reference to the issue in plain text in a vague manner. It is possible that the feature also functions by using tweets made by a user earlier.
The demo also showed that each event on Happening Now that is at the top of the timeline of a user’s tweets will have an arrow, which is small and points downward on the top right corner. Once a user taps this, the social media platform will explain the reason behind the interest a user has on a specific event even when they are really indifferent about it. Also, users can hide the issue if they do not really care about it.
Benefits of the “Happening Now” Feature
Looking at Happening Now, it is obvious Twitter designed it with new users primarily in their mind. The organization has been trying to expand its number of members. About 3 months ago, there were reports that Twitter could not get any user during Q2 of this year. So it seems Twitter, with a view to expanding its user base, has introduced Happening Now to make its services more accessible and prevent another poor performance in other quarters.
Another Feature of Twitter on the Horizon
2 days ago, the company also revealed its feature, “Save for Later,” which is still under development. This section, according to Twitter, will allow users save a tweet privately much easier and looking it up later.
Referred to as a revised “Moment” feature by some users, Twitter’s Happening Now will also users follow current events in a much more easier manner. For now, the company is only focusing on sports events but will include current news and entertainment later. Happening Now aggregates tweets on the same issue by using an algorithm for supplying you with dedicated tweet timeline on the particular issue currently happening. Since Happening Now does not tell the full story like Moments, the two are different; though they share some similarities.