Recent leaks from Jane Wong, a reverse engineering expert, reveal that Twitter is experimenting with emoji reactions in tweets. The leaked screenshot posted by Wong on Twitter shows an interface for tweet-reactions which will give users the option to respond with several emojis such as crying, laughing, shocked, and more.
Twitter had previously tested out reactions back in 2015 when the platform was probably looking to provide appropriate reactions for tweets. It was at the same time when Facebook was testing reaction features for its platform. Twitter’s Director of Product Management Suzanne Xie confirmed that Twitter had tested the feature recently. However, Twitter commented later that the feature is currently not being tested.
Twitter’s @suzannexie said it's more like "Quote tweet with an emoji reaction" and it's something they tested last year
It's found in the current version of Twitter app and for some reason it's still sitting around in there https://t.co/ETozQj92GF
— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) June 11, 2020
As per Twitter’s statement to The Verge, the react with emoji feature is no longer under testing. Jane Wong found leftover code from Twitter’s previous experiments and therefore, shared it as an upcoming feature. Thus, categorically denying the development of Facebook-like reactions feature for Twitter.
Twitter has also updated its platform in the past few months with a number of new features such as turning off replies to tweets, react to direct messages, and more. Twitter’s feature of reacting to direct messages also suggested the company’s interest in emojis.
New React with Fleet and other features
Another feature called ‘React with Fleet‘ might also be under testing as Twitter has been working on disappearing tweets for a long time. Twitter is officially rolling out the feature only in selected countries. Italy, Brazil, India, and several other countries are currently testing Fleets with Twitter users and trying out tweets that disappear after 24 hours.
Facebook offers a similar feature for reacting to images, videos, posts, and more, with Facebook users engaging with it more than the platform had initially expected. The company frequently rolls out new reactions for the public and recently debuted a new ‘care’ emoji as well. If Twitter finally does introduce the reaction feature embedded in the like tweet option, it is not likely that a lot of users change their long-time habits or liking tweets and utilize the reaction feature, but if they do so, the overall sharing experience on the platform will likely be more expressive than it already is.