In news that won’t have a huge impact, but does hold a level of symbolic relevance, Twitter has today announced that Moments are no more.
Not all moments last. As of today we’re removing the option to create Moments for most users as we focus on improving other experiences.
Don’t worry, you can still see past Moments and follow Live events on Twitter.
— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) December 7, 2022
Well, sort of. As Twitter notes, you’ll still be able to view Moments created in times past. But the option to create new Moments is going away, which effectively marks the end of the Moments project, which was launched with much fanfare just days after the exit of former Twitter chief Dick Costolo back in 2015.
At that time, Moments were being touted as ‘a brand new way to look at tweets’, with Twitter looking to make the feature a big focus, as a means to help highlight the best of what the platform has to offer, without needing to know your way around the app, or be following the right people.
Moments was a highlight reel of the top stories each day curated by Twitter’s news team. But while the initial response to the option showed some promise, Moments usage, and interest, has steadily declined over time.
In 2017, Twitter backtracked on its dedicated Moments tab, replacing it with Explore instead, a more inclusive discovery surface for top tweet content. The following year, Twitter removed the option to create moments on mobile, which effectively flagged the end of the experiment, at least as a focal point for the app.
But users have still been able to create Moments on desktop, and a number of people still do, which provides a means to create dedicated highlight packages of top tweets, good for summaries of, say, Twitter chats and highly tweeted events.
But still, not many people are using them.
Last March, Twitter also removed the option to embed Moments, due to low usage of the option. And then, amid the recent mass lay-offs following Elon Musk’s takeover at the app, most of Twitter’s curation team was let go. The platform is now honing its focus on things like subscriptions and payments, as part of Musk’s ‘Twitter 2.0’ plan, which has also seen the demise of other elements, like its publisher partnership program for Twitter Blue, its COVID misinformation enforcement, and its podcast audio tab.
And now Moments becomes another casualty of that shift.
Again, from a practical standpoint, the impact will likely be minimal, but it’s another element of the app that will head to the digital graveyard, along with Fleets, Vine, Periscope and other features.
Really, Moments never truly lived up to its promise, but at the same time, it was probably never going to, as reforming the concept of what tweets can be has never actually worked out.
Which is restrictive to a degree, but maybe there’s more than can be gleaned from tweets themselves, and maybe, possibly, Elon Musk is the man to do it.
I mean, the app’s still running, with half the staff gone so maybe there is some method to what seems like madness.
Either way, Moments won’t be part of that future, with the functionality now being removed from the app.