How often do you scroll past a tweet in your timeline, wondering exactly where that t.co or bit.ly link will take you, cautiously hovering over the URL and rallying yourself for some spam attack? Twitter has felt your pain — which is why it’s rolling out more expanded content views in tweets.
In an official blog post, the social media giant said that it has gradually started rolling out expanded tweets — basically, tweets which allow you to see content previews, view images and play videos from their partner sites. Expanded tweets have previously been reserved for YouTube videos and images from some third parties like Instagram.
Twitter hopes these changes will make it easier to spot breaking news (because trending topics aren’t a perfect indication of what everyone is talking about) and for users to see who produced a story, and engage with them directly. The changes will affect the desktop version of their website and their mobile site.
According to Michael Sippey, Twitter’s product team director, now when you view a tweet which links to one of the social network’s partner sites, “you can see a preview with the headline, the introduction and sometimes the Twitter accounts of the publisher and writer. You can continue to read the article, follow these accounts, and reply, favorite or retweet the tweet.”
Who are these lucky partner sites, you ask? They include The Wall Street Journal, TIME magazine, The New York Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, Der Spiegel Online, TMZ, WWE, BET, Lifetime and BuzzFeed. The function will hit its iPhone and Android apps soon.