Twitter is at its best when it seems like everyone is tuned into the same thing at once: a presidential debate, the NBA finals, anything Kanye West does. But the company has done very little to proactively generate these “live” shared experiences. The features it’s built for people interested in ongoing events — Trending, Moments, live video, curated timelines, and search — are almost entirely disconnected.
All this will change within the next few weeks, however, as Twitter begins building dedicated pages for news events (think: Hawaii’s volcano eruption) that will bring everything together. Inside these pages, curated timelines will show the best and latest tweets about an event, live video will show up at the top when relevant, and a compose field will sit at the bottom for people to chime in. Twitter will promote these pages everywhere: in bubbles at the top of people’s timelines, in search, in its Explore tab, and via personalized push notifications. Moments will be almost entirely absorbed into this new feature, in function but not in name, as its curators will now work alongside algorithms to pick which tweets to feature.
“This change we’re working on is designed to make it as easy to follow an event as it is to follow a person,” Twitter Product VP Keith Coleman said in a briefing at Twitter headquarters Tuesday. “Without following accounts, simply by tapping one tile, you’re getting the best of the conversation on Twitter.”
The changes are part of a “much larger arc in the transformation of Twitter,” Coleman said, adding that Twitter wants these event pages…