Just over a year ago, as Twitter’s future hung in the balance, the company introduced its innovative “Circle” feature, allowing users to share tweets exclusively with select groups of followers. However, the fate of this feature now appears uncertain, given the recent turbulence surrounding the platform since Elon Musk assumed control.
Under Elon’s leadership, Twitter has been a wild ride, albeit one with a downward trajectory. In a notable turn of events, the Twitter alternatives Bluesky, Mastodon and lately Meta’s Threads experienced a surge in sign-ups following Musk’s announcement of plans to transform Twitter into a fully paid platform. In a single day, Bluesky signed up over 50,000 new users in a remarkable response that underscores the evolving landscape of social media. Threads got a record 100 million sign-ups within a week of launch. Elon Musk also recently announced that X could soon become a full subscription-based service that would see all users pay a fee to use the platform and usual, he says it’s a great way to fend off the bots. This comes as he claims X now has 550 million users and with the way he talks about the bots so much, it could mean that many of these new 200 million users could very well be bots. Well I guess we will all have to wait and see if these changes will be carried out by Elon Musk.
Twitter’s “Circles” feature has found favor among users for its ability to share content exclusively with like-minded individuals. It offers a safe space for expressing opinions without the fear of contentious debates. In essence, it encourages meaningful conversations within a circle of friends.
However, as the saying goes, “all good things must come to an end,” and it appears that the end for “Circles” is arriving sooner than expected. Introduced in August 2022, Twitter has surprisingly announced its discontinuation on October 31st, a mere one year and two months later.
They haven’t given any reasons for the purge though. Speculation suggests that it could be a measure to combat issues like data scraping or the proliferation of bot accounts. Regardless, once the feature vanishes, users will no longer have the option to add people to their circles. However, it seems that existing circles will persist, as Twitter plans to offer guidance on how to remove individuals from circles after the October 31st deadline.
As an increasing number of users seek out Twitter alternatives, the abrupt removal of beloved features raises questions about the platform’s sustainability under Elon Musk’s leadership. This decision could very well change the way people use X but if recent events have taught us anything, it is that Twitter now X is like the proverbial cat with nine lives.