28 January 2020
Twitter is now testing self-destructing tweets called Fleets in Brazil that will disappear after 24 hours. If this sounds familiar to you, it is because the feature is similar to Stories functionality on other social media platforms. Snapchat was first to introduce this new format of sharing content which was adopted by Instagram followed by others.
The official announcement mentions that Fleets is meant to help users express themselves more freely. Twitter says that many users refrain from sharing their views on topics as traditional tweets are permanent. With Fleets, they can feel assured that those tweets will disappear automatically after 24 hours. Moreover, other users cannot heart, retweet or embed Fleets which means they will be limited to the user's own profile.
While other users can reply to Fleets, they will be able to do so only via direct messages (DMs) and that too only if you have your DMs open to everyone. These tweets will mainly include texts but also supports adding GIFs, stickers, and videos. In other tweets, Fleets are exactly like standard tweets except for being ephemeral and without any interactions from others on the platform.
A user will be able to check out Fleet tweets in a separate row at the top just like how Stories are shown on other platforms. The row will have a plus icon in the beginning that can be used to send one's own Fleet. It should be noted that if someone's account is private and you don't follow them, then you will not be able to see their Fleet tweets.
Twitter has said that Fleets are currently limited to smartphone apps with no words on when they will be expanded to the web. It has also not revealed plans about global expansion but we can expect that to depend on how Brazilian users react to the feature.