Maybe you’re not a Twitter user, in which case you’re probably not going to be interested in today’s blog post 🙂
But if you do use Twitter, maybe like me you didn’t know about Twitter’s bookmarks. The bookmark feature has been around since the end of February, but I only just discovered it last week. Here’s a blog post from Twitter on the day the bookmarks were introduced. I’ve bookmarked things several times since I realized I could. Bookmarking is exactly what it sounds like. You can “bookmark” a tweet to save it to a list, where you can later go to retrieve it for reading when you have time. Because of the extreme speed at which tweets fly through my feed, I would not easily be able to find things again without this feature.
Before now the only way for me to “save” tweets I wanted to refer back to was to “like” or retweet them. Which led to awkward moments like this one, in which The Paris Review appears to be reacting happily to the news of Robert Stone’s death.
Actually, in looking at that old image, a screenshot I took on the day Robert Stone died, January 11, 2015, I now realize that Twitter’s “like” is an even newer feature than I thought. As you can see, The Paris Review actually “favorited” the LA Times Books’ tweet about Stone’s death; they didn’t “like” it. I did a quick online search and found that Twitter replaced the “favorite” feature with the “like” in early November 2015. Here’s a great article from The Verge on the switch from the “favorite” stars to the “like” hearts.
Personally, I am grateful for Facebook’s “like” alternatives. It’s so nice to be able to put a tearful face up as a reaction to sad news instead of a thumbs-up or a star or a heart.
Twitter’s bookmarks are private, which is another really nice feature about them. Sometimes if a person I follow has “liked” tweets that I’ve found disturbing, then I think badly of them as the kind of person who likes that kind of tweet. Yet occasionally I’ve wanted to save something myself for later reference, maybe for teaching, that I would ordinarily never decide to “like” because it was an unlikable subject even though it was useful for making a point in class. Now I can bookmark that tweet and find it again without accidentally causing people to judge me or unfollow me because they think I am liking and supporting something heinous.