The RT problem

I really like the new style retweet and  use it often to forward well-crafted tweets but I’ve become more bothered of late that “New RT”  doesn’t show up in Twitter lists.

Many power users rely heavily on twitter lists and its important that everyone can see a RT.

The Good (New RT)

  • Tweets with several of new RTs float to the top of searches.
  • Tweets show avatars of the people that retweeted it via the new style
  • Easy to use and eliminates confusion of what the original tweet said.

The Bad (New RT)

  • They don’t show in Twitter lists
  • They don’t show up as mentions so most people aren’t you retweeted them

The Ugly (Old RT)

Old style retweets can lead to messy tweets & confusion

Should I abandon the new style? Which do you prefer and why?


I asked for feedback and it seems everyone is leaning toward the old style RT.


5 responses to “The RT problem”

  1. mrjawright says:

    i’ve preferred the ‘new’ way since they first introduced the ‘retweet’ button to the site.

    adding ‘RT’ to someone else’s content simply introduces noise, it’s meta-information. it adds no _meaning_ to the content above the fact that you felt it was worth repeating. The new way does that, too.

    if i feel like the content is worth repeating, i want to repeat the original, not someone else’s (potentially edited, see next point) repeat of it.

    When I see ‘RT’ I know this has been already edited, was something redacted to make it easier to ‘RT’? i can’t know. I don’t want to vet every source to see how reliable their ‘RT’ skills are.

    If you’re concern is metrics, no they don’t show up as mentions. but they do show up as ‘Retweets’. which would you rather see, 100 individual mentions, or single entry under ‘Retweets’ with ‘100 times’. Your content is still repeated, but without noise in your mentions feed that may cause you to miss something.

    • Keith says:

      I have the same issues on spreading the original content but visibility is
      the trump card. Until Twitter standardizes “New RT” to show in the mentions
      tab I think I’ll default to the old manner. It seems that is the crowd

      Thanks bud.

  2. You left out a major issue with new retweets. If user A is private, and user B tries to retweet, user B will get an error saying he is not authorized (Seesmic Desktop 2 Windows, Twitter Official iOS). User B can only Quote, which is old retweet, without the “RT”.

  3. Luke Morris says:

    I dig the new RT when I’m just retweeting. If I’m retweeting something w/o adding to it, the points isn’t that I’m retweeting it, it’s that the retweetee’s message is worth sharing. I just see the new RT as my method of getting out of the way of the message.

    Anymore I only use the old RT when I want to add a comment to the original material.

    A really good account combining them is @acarvin from NPR following all the uprisings in the Mideast. When the original tweet is credible enough and worth sharing, he’ll use new RT to let the message its job and stay out of the way. When he wants help confirming something he’ll use the old RT and preface it with “Source?” or “Any other witnesses?”

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