Twitter Launches Moments, the Long-Awaited Project Lightning

By Justin Lafferty Comment

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Twitter, in recent months, has been trying to engage with those who don’t understand the service and quit shortly after signing up. The so-called Project Lightning was aimed at those users, allowing them to see the important news, bypassing Twitter’s reverse chronological order.

Today, Twitter announced Moments—a tab on desktop and mobile that shows the top news stories (and cute animals) trending right now. When you click or tap on a moment, it leads you to the most relevant tweets about that topic.

Madhu Muthukumar, Twitter’s product manager for Moments, blogged about the feature:

Every day, people share hundreds of millions of Tweets. Among them are things you can’t experience anywhere but on Twitter: conversations between world leaders and celebrities, citizens reporting events as they happen, cultural memes, live commentary on the night’s big game, and many more. We know finding these only-on-Twitter moments can be a challenge, especially if you haven’t followed certain accounts. But it doesn’t have to be.

Moments helps you find the best of Twitter as easily as tapping an icon – regardless of who you follow. Just visit the new tab called Moments, where you will discover stories unfolding on Twitter.

Here’s a look at what this looks like on mobile:

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And on desktop:

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Mathukumar described how Moments can be followed:

Moments are often updated as new information or great Tweets become available. You’ll know a story has been updated since your last view when you see a blue dot in the upper righthand corner of the image associated with the Moment. For stories that update very frequently — like live sporting events or awards shows where it’s critical to know what’s happening minute by minute — you’ll see an option to follow the Moment, which blends the Tweets directly into your timeline. So you can keep track of the latest updates in real time without having to tap back and forth between tabs. When that story ends, so do the Tweets, leaving your timeline just as it was before.

This could be a huge leap forward for Twitter’s goal to capture casual/non-engaged users. Many people feel overwhelmed by the information coming to them through tweets from several different people and want some way to cut through the noise.

Readers: What do you think of Moments?


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