Trust Twitter to always roll up with a new update. Last week it was killing Twitter Fleets, and adding captions to voice tweets on iOS devices. Today Twitter is testing out upvote and downvote buttons for replies to tweets. 

The company announced yesterday that a select group of iOS users may receive different upvote or downvotes options on their Twitter app. The buttons may appear as the usual heart icon and a new down arrow, a thumbs up and a thumbs down icon, or up and down arrows similar to Reddit’s voting style.

But that isn’t Twitter’s intent.

According to the Twitter Support account, the aim is to find out what kind of replies people like, and how they—Twitter—can make these replies more accessible to other people who view a conversation. 

Cody Elam, a user researcher at Twitter, clarified that past research on Twitter interactions have shown that people liked four kinds of replies—informative, supportive, positive, and funny. However, some of these replies aren’t pushed to the top of the comment section quickly enough, so this experiment will show if this voting style will help.

Twitter is also emphatic on the fact that this test is just for research purposes. As such, the buttons will not show up as dislikes and votes will not change the order of replies. Although they may change their tone if their little experiment checks out.

Fun fact: Your downvotes are only visible to you. So, don’t be scared people will see the dislikes on your off-topic blunder.

The Reddit-like voting option is not the only Twitter feature that’s been inspired by another app. Twitter Spaces is a Clubhouse lookalike, and then there’s the ill-fated Fleets—RIP—a photocopy of Instagram Reels, which also copied Snapchat Stories.

Oh well, I hope they eventually add the Twitter upvote and downvote buttons. It’d be nice to show my dislike for a comment without having to type a reply and draw negative attention towards me. And it’ll bring a whole new meaning to being ratioed— *rubs hands sinisterly*

It’s still not the edit button, but it’ll do…for now.

Now tell us, what do you think about Twitter’s upvote and downvote option? Is it something you’d like to see?

Chidinma Egwuogu | Author

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